During this pandemic I found hope in my relationships with people of other faiths, as well as other Christians.
Last spring, the Interfaith Brotherhood-Sisterhood Committee of Bergen County began
praying together online. Instead of monthly meetings to plan our big annual event, Christians - Protestant and Roman Catholic - and representatives of seven other faith traditions, young and old, gathered on Zoom twice a month. We each offered prayers, scripture readings and teachings, hymns and chants and other music from each of our traditions. In the midst of a pandemic, we came closer together and became intimately familiar with each other’s faces and beliefs.
We became friends.
Saturday was the feast day of Charles Henry Brent.
In 1901 he became the Missionary Bishop to the Philippines. Later he served as Senior Chaplain of the American Expeditionary Forces in World War I. In 1918 he became Bishop of Western New York.
Brent was deeply committed to the cause of Christian unity for two decades. He led the Episcopal Church in the young ecumenical movement that led to the first World Conference on Faith and Order in 1927 in Lausanne, Switzerland, over which he presided. He died in 1929.
I find hope in our Church when it is a leader in seeking out and befriending other Christians and people of other faiths. Just as I found hope and joy in sharing my faith with my interfaith friends, and in hearing them share theirs,
I believe that hope is always found when we open our hearts to others and “seek Christ in all persons.”