Friday, November 20 2020
I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power (Ephesians 1:17-19).
During the past four weeks, parishioners have witnessed to the joy and love that they experience at St. John’s. One of the common themes is the relationship we have with our Lord and the deep sense of family that we experience at St. John’s. In his convention address, Bishop Provenzano spoke of racial reconciliation and outreach to those who are hurting during this Covid Pandemic as two areas that our Diocese needs to focus on. I am thankful for our Sacred Ground team and the ECW for keeping our focus in line with the bishop’s vision. If we can continue to speak the truth of the Gospel and witness to the love of Christ, we can remain on our path to becoming a Beloved Community
God reveals to us the hope in which he has called us. When we work together for the benefit of others, God draws us into a deeper relationship with Christ, enlightens the eyes of our heart, and blesses our ministry. When this happens the hungry in our community are fed, the lonely are visited, and the sick are healed. When we read the stories and witness in our Sacred Ground Curriculum, we get together in circles that can have frank conversations about racial reconciliation.
In this week’s Gospel we hear, “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me” (Matt. 35:34-36).
Each of us is called in this season of Hope, to help those in our community that are in the greatest need. Many of us feel the fear, loneliness, and separation of this Covid Pandemic. And yet through Christ, we are able to look at those in even greater need than ourselves. When we have compassion for those in need, we respond to the suffering of one another. This in turn makes us vulnerable. We begin to feel their pain and give out of Christ’s love. When we give because we care, we can have an impact just by being there. Have you ever wondered what to say to a person that has just lost something dear to them? You might listen carefully to their pain and then thank them for sharing. Your presence means more than any words that you might think will make the situation better.
I pray this holiday season that you will be blessed with good health, good friends, and a family that cares about you. St. John’s can be a family to all those who wish to join our community. With the eyes of our heart enlightened, we can love others as Christ loves us.
In Christ's love,