Many of you are familiar with the work of the late Catholic priest Henri Nouwen, who left an illustrious career teaching in elite institutions, to live at L’Arche, an intentional residential community of people with disabilities. They cared nothing for his academic and theological pedigree, nor were they even capable of comprehending it. And yet, in an ironic twist, they became his instructors. They taught him how to accept his own limitations and vulnerabilities, how to receive the unearned mercies of God and enter more deeply into union with Christ.
Nouwen reminds us that “Jesus didn’t say, ‘Blessed are those who care for the poor.’ He said, ‘Blessed are we where we are poor, where we are broken.’ It is there that God loves us deeply and pulls us into deeper communion with himself. I find it very important to stress that we are wounded healers; we don’t have to run away from our vulnerability as if we don’t hurt.” This Sunday we continue our series in the life of David, gaining biblical perspective on people with disabilities, and how this touches on every single person’s relationship with God. People with disabilities are a gift to the church. The story of Mephibosheth, a man with disabilities to whom David showed loyal love, is a gem.
Have you prayerful consideration to your annual pledge? This Sunday we will bring forward our faith-filled pledges for giving to the mission of God through Christ Church in 2016. We invite you to work your incrementally to a tithe (10% as a biblical “rule of thumb”) if you are not already there. The beautiful and transforming work of God among us depends on the time, treasure and talents of every person at Christ Church. You can also submit your pledge here.
Lenten Sundays and the Great Litany. This Sunday, the first Sunday of Lent, we will begin worship with the Great Litany, a thorough soul-scrubbing corporate time of confession, as the procession of the cross winds through the congregation. You will want to be on time to participate in this meaningful act of worship together!