A Week's Reflection
Lydia Mulkey
April 20, 2022

When I remember you in my prayers, I always thank my God because I hear of your love for all the saints and your faith toward the Lord Jesus. I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective when you perceive all the good that we may do for Christ. I have indeed received much joy and encouragement from your love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you, my brother.
~ Philemon 1:4-7

As I reflect on the past week, so many meaningful moments come to mind…

  • Members sat on the steps of the church on Palm Sunday watching the service together on a phone as a public witness even in the face of threats.

  • The hospitality and generosity of the staff at Oak Park Temple as we toured the space early in the week saying, “Don’t bring anything we have here! You can use anything we’ve got!”

  • The criticism reminding me that we can either do the work of dismantling racism in a way that invites criticism, or we can choose not to do it at all. As that reality settled deeper and deeper in my chest; I grew so deeply grateful for all of you.

  • Seeing the signup genius for Maundy Thursday go from frighteningly empty to completely full with folks emailing to say, “We saw you have all the volunteers you need, but we’ll be there to help anyway!”

  • The youth reading and moving with the drama and intensity of the story of Holy Week in the Tenebrae in a new space with confidence.

  • The press conference that appropriately moved the spotlight from us to leaders of color within the church and brought me to tears.

  • The sight of a full sanctuary on Easter Sunday and the sound of “Christ is risen indeed!” echoing through the space

People of First United, to quote Paul, “When I remember you in my prayers, I always thank my God because I hear of your love…” We have more work to do, and I know we will do it together and with love.