The Transformative Power of Love
Churches are often concerned with what happens within our own walls. At Saint Michael, we know this well. Hundreds and hundreds of you work on different aspects of our life together. From worship to formation to pastoral care and beyond, much of what we do focuses on internal goals and needs. This is a high calling and a perfectly appropriate way to invest in ourselves.
This fall, we have the opportunity to commit (or recommit) to the future of our mission both inside and outside of our community. As we invest our time, talent, and treasure, we commit to the transformative power of love in the world. The constant call to recommit and return to the truth of God is what we do as disciples of Jesus. This most often manifests in service to one another here at Saint Michael, and yet, internal ministry is not all there is.
Our highest goal is to witness to the truth of Christ in the world. We do this by reflecting the light and love of Christ to others. We share that love with one another here in our church family, but it should never stop here. We love one another in order to bear witness to the power of God’s love to those outside our church in the hopes that they will join us in this transformative life of discipleship.
Saint Michael has a long history of generosity in our community. We see that generosity on display through the efforts of the St. Michael’s Woman’s Exchange, Jubilee Park, or any of the countless other ways our fellow members give of themselves to our Dallas neighbors. The call to be mission-focused is what draws many to Saint Michael, and our commitment to the community should continue to grow.
That witness to the world outside our walls has been in the front of my mind. Just a few weeks ago, I agreed to join a small group of faith leaders from across the Metroplex in a conversation with the publisher and editors of The Dallas Morning News. Their desire was to work intentionally to promote the best future for our city, and they wanted congregations and leaders from churches like Saint Michael to be at the table. The conversation was energetic and clear, and a good reminder to me that we have a leadership role in the city and we should claim that responsibility with honor and vision.
And yet, our leadership responsibility is even larger than that. In just a few weeks, we will welcome the two most important leaders in our denomination to Saint Michael in an unprecedented public panel conversation. On Thursday, September 20th, Saint Michael will welcome the Most Rev. and Rt. Hon. Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, and The Most Rev. Michael B. Curry, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, to our parish. I will moderate a public, live-streamed conversation between these two leaders on how the reconciling power of God’s love can transform our world. This message is critical to the future of the Gospel, and it is absolutely our responsibility to give the Gospel the highest platform we can whenever we can.
“As we invest our time, talent, and treasure, we commit to the transformative power of love in the world.”
It’s true that fewer and fewer people in our city and nation are going to church, and yet Saint Michael is bucking that trend. Our worship attendance and programmatic engagement has been on a continuous upswing for nearly two years and I believe the momentum will continue. That’s important for the health and vitality of this church, but even more than that, we can be a sign of God’s renewing energy for a world that needs hope. God is alive, and it’s a privilege to be part of a community in which God’s light continues to shine brightly in and through us. May we continue to clearly and confidently reflect the light of Christ to every single person we meet, that they will know they are loved by God without exception.
Tags: Rector's Blog