The Rev. Ledlie I. Laughlin
Rector , St. Columba's
Episcopal Church
Washington, DC
Dear Ones,

I am told that one of my predecessors coined the phrase, "you can hide behind the pillar for as long as you want." 
I like it. Some of us come to church eager to leap in to the fray and get involved in the life of this vibrant congregation. But others among us want to take our time, remain anonymous. It could be that we're still "shopping" or not sure if the Episcopal Church is right for us, or that we've gone through a rough patch and want to lick our wounds, stay quiet, and allow the healing balm of the Spirit to envelop us in the midst of a worshiping community. Take your time. We'll be here when you're ready.

Some of us are ready for the next step. The call of Christ and the call of faith is invariably a call to take a step that will enable us to grow into fullness of life as a beloved child of God. It's not a "one size fits all" proposition. Each encounter in the Bible depicts Jesus meeting someone where they are and inviting her or him to a step that will be for them life-giving: to receive healing, to release their hold on possessions, to enter into relationship, to care for others, to see or stand or walk, to repent or forgive, to love or pray, to commit or to let go. Who are you going to be when you grow up-into fullness as God's beloved-and what next step is Christ inviting you to take?

Bishop Mariann Budde will be with us on June 4th to celebrate the feast of Pentecost-the day when the disciples and thousands more received the Holy Spirit. When she's here let's all take whatever is our next step. 
I would love to see scores, even hundreds, of us participate in one of the four rites of initiation:
  1. reaffirm our baptismal vows - for those who want to recommit to their faith; 
  2. be "received" - i.e., become an Episcopalian if raised and confirmed in another Christian denomination;
  3. be confirmed - if baptized but have not yet made a "mature affirmation of faith;"
  4. be baptized - for those who want to become a Christian.
Are you ready? If you think you may be, or curious to find out what the Christian story may mean for you, come join the Wednesday night Alpha Course starting April 19th designed with these questions in mind. We'll meet for seven weeks, share a meal together like the earliest Christians did and jump right into learning and conversation based off a video lecture series. The time to ask the questions, to hear the story afresh or for the first time is now. I hope you will take advantage of this opportunity and say yes to going deeper in both faith and commitment.

Interested in taking the next step?
Contact the Rev. Amy Molina-Moore for more information.


P.S. Our last formation class of the program year is coming up! Please see the class description below:

 Law, Religion and Values: 
 Competing Theories of Justice
 Have you ever wondered about things like: "What are
 the moral values underlying the law?  How does the law  achieve justice?  How can moral judgments be brought
 to bear in modern, secular institutions or in the formation  of public policies?  If so, (or if you're now thinking about  it) please join Dr. Michael Kessler, Director of the Berkley  Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs at  Georgetown University for a series of talks answering  these questions and more. Classes will be Wednesday  evenings in the Great Hall at 7pm starting April 19th -  May 24th (no class on May 10th). 

St. Columba's | 4201 Albemarle St., NW | Washington, DC 20016 |