Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Beyond our Doors

We are reading this book at St. Luke's and
discussing it on Sunday afternoons
from 4-6 p.m. in May.
There is an online discussion happening
throughout our Diocese as well.
Click here for more info.
St. Luke's has a wonderful campus and buildings. We also know that we have been called to go "beyond our doors" to proclaim the good news in the wider world. This past Sunday we started an afternoon series in which we are reading a new book, Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the the Birth of New Spiritual Awakening, by Diana Butler Bass. We'll post some reflections about that book here soon. In the meantime, here is an excerpt from our Rector, Anne Hodges-Copple's latest article in the May newsletter that touches on some of the themes.
For the last two years Bishop Curry has been using the image of Jesus going ahead of his disciples to Galilee to challenge us. Episcopalians love our creature comforts. We are comforted by our holy and reasonable worship. But we are worried that the rest of the world is not as enamored with our traditions or any religion at all. "Oh, I am spiritual. Just not religious," say our family, friends and neighbors. Go to Galilee means we cannot merely open our doors and wait for those other people to come walk in. We can no longer sit back and wait for the people to come to us. We must be the people willing to go to the congregation just beyond our doors.

Where are we going, St Luke’s? Where is God calling us? In what surprising and maybe a little terrifying places will we go, seek, and find Jesus? Let me describe a few of the ways I spot some Galilee signposts directing us into strange encounters with the Risen Lord.

-Our first Faith Team is off to a fantastic start of providing emotional, strategic, and material support to a man recently released from prison.

-ECW is providing support to Project T.U.R.N., a seminary class that meets in a correctional facility for women where some of the students are incarcerated and others are not.

-Our collaboration with El Buen Pastor and the rest of the Durham Convocation, called Latino Education Achievement Partnership, moves us out in mutual ministry to a wider world. LEAP is a new vision for childhood education consistent with our deepest principles. LEAP already provides valuable tutoring for elementary age children. In the fall of 2012 LEAP will start the Kindergarten readiness program in the Elizabeth Gray Building.

-This summer our youth will travel to Galilee when they embark on various mission project, from the migrant worker  camps of North Carolina to the home of the Blackfeet Nation in Montana.

-We continue to organize more pastoral care teams to make sure that we are not leaving anyone behind. We are a community on the move, even for those of us who find our physical mobility more and more limited.

Get on board, St. Luke’s. Resurrection is the gift of new life that doesn’t wait until the end of time. Resurrection means now is the time to move out and on in mission and ministry in new and imaginative ways. Nothing to fear and everything to gain. Alleluia!

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