Growing in God's Love as an Open, Caring Community

Cross Words by Rev. Myrick Cross

 

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     S Fall, 2018           “Thanks for the changing colors!”           

As the season turns all around us on the outside, it is a good time to turn inward and discern how God’s Spirit is alive and inspiring us on the inside. The Fall Retreat “Making Comfort and Joy – The Art of Lament” scheduled for October 13-14 in Bar Harbor, presents a wonderful opportunity for checking in with the life of the Spirit. All of our wonderful and varied busy-ness is given meaning and finds its rhythm from the heart’s center and our relationship with God.

One of the Vestry’s high priority goals for this year is fostering spiritual growth. A second opportunity for this will be the rolling out of a year-long house church program, approved by the Vestry at our last meeting. In a few weeks, everyone in the congregation and some others will be receiving a personal invitation to participate in The Way of Love,” a series of monthly small group gatherings in peoples’ homes for a simple soup meal, the opportunity to get to know one another better, inclusion of a “stranger” or two, some discussion based on a common theme, and prayer. Please make every effort to participate in this faith community building opportunity.

Hearing every word of the Prayers of the People  and Readings thanks to our new sound system is very exciting. Thanks to everyone who contributed to the “Sound Investment” request that made it possible. To use an appropriate pun, I have heard nothing but positive “feedback!”

Now, onward with the Visual aspect of our technological upgrade. We are making slow but deliberate progress in our ability to communicate the “…good news of God in Christ,” as our promise at Baptism was made.

The Worship Team meeting last week had an in-depth discussion about the future possibilities of flexible seating in the sanctuary and how our worship could be enhanced. Soon we will provide the congregation with a scale model of the sanctuary with which everyone can experiment with alternative seating and furniture arrangements. Just imagine how great seeing our sisters and brothers’ faces instead of the backs of their heads, might be! The Creation circle on a Celtic cross suggests the symbol of “community in the round.”

This season of gathering in with an attitude of gratitude has real meaning for us in the St. Pat’s community. We have much for which to be grateful, particularly the healthy, positive motion of the Spirit’s moving among us. It is this singular Spirit of Love that is revealing the mind of Christ in who we are and how we are learning to live together as the Body. Change in the colorful foliage outside signals the new cycle of growth inside the trees. We can choose to embrace change and growth in the season of our souls. Don’t miss all the colors!

 

Shalom,     Rick