Christ’s ministry belongs to all of us. I am reflecting on this truth not only as I consider the leadership and involvement of so many of you here on the church’s campus, but also as I watch you extend kindness to your neighbors and actively work to improve the communities where you live and work. I see your desire to do good and extend grace in the world. I see how we each live out our faith according to our unique gifts and personalities.
A book that is currently helping me think about our shared ministry, as well as questions of God’s call and God’s will, the human desire for fairness, helpful and unhelpful responses to suffering, and the meaning of death and resurrection, is The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott. It’s about a group of nuns in Brooklyn, New York, in the early part of the twentieth century, and the people they come to know and serve. McDermott is a past recipient of the National Book Award. One reviewer says of The Ninth Hour that it is “rendered with remarkable delicacy, heart, and intelligence.” I will be facilitating a discussion of this book on Monday, June 25 at 7 pm at the church. Perhaps you would like to read and join in!
Because together we want to offer a ministry that is truly encouraging of individual and community health and resilience, I am (with Jonathan’s support and our wonderful staff’s involvement) arranging for RHUMC to host a learning event for teachers and mentors who are working and volunteering in church or community settings such as Sunday School, Vacation Bible Camp, after school programs, parent support programs, and youth service programs. To be held on Saturday, July 7, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., the experiential training and workshops will be beneficial to a wide array of participants. Again, I hope many of you will take advantage of this opportunity to strengthen your understandings and abilities in order to be able to fully support our mission with children, youth, and families.
Thank you for the joy of being part of the wonderful family of faith known as Rolling Hills United Methodist Church!