Pastoral message to the congregation: Learn, Pray, Act
Beloved friends of Christ, as your clergy we want to say two things today: (1) we love you, and, (2) by pulling together, we can live into what God has promised to make us: one in Christ Jesus.
When Jesus’ disciples were first learning to be followers, he told them that people who receive the word and accept it bear fruit, not just a little fruit but thirty and sixty and a hundredfold. (Mark 4:20)
This is just the moment to pull together and remember that God gives us the word — Holy Scriptures and the teachings we get from them — so that we will not just survive but bear fruit that blesses people far beyond us. God’s power will do this even though we may be exhausted from Coronavirus, job losses, and the collective realization we cannot avoid: George Floyd’s death reminds us of the sin we all are vulnerable to falling into, failing to fully respect the dignity of a child of God, based on their skin color. In short, racism. We are a nation grieving in many ways. We are also a band of disciples, driven by the mission of the Episcopal Church: to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ (BCP p.855.) God reminds us that, if we diligently receive the word, God will bless us to be a blessing: thirty, sixty and a hundredfold. God is giving us the opportunity to pull together and learn, pray and act together.
We want to start by inviting you into opportunities to learn together. We will continue to offer ways to pray together, as we have been doing, and there will be other opportunities too. And as we receive the word and think together about what may be stopping us from fully living into the love and flourishing of all God’s children, we will find ways to act to be healers and reconcilers. These practices of
Learn, Pray, and Act
are intended to guide us into the healing work of racial reconciliation. Stay tuned for upcoming information about learning groups.
We are particularly interested in learning more about the struggles of people of color. Our intention is to educate ourselves by listening to the voices of our Black and Brown members and neighbors, and tending to our relationships, as siblings in Christ. Presiding Bishop Curry’s sermon for Pentecost is a great place to start, along with the links provided by the national Episcopal Church.
Click here for the sermon & resources.
We also hope to work with those of you who are interested in leading in your own ways.
God loves us with a never-failing love. So let us love one another and bear abundant fruit that lasts.
In Christ -
Reverends Shirley, Richard, and Darren