by Kathye Hamm
As we travel through Holy Week, I’m in a similar place (spiritually and emotionally speaking) that I have been in recent years for most festivals and “high holy days” in the liturgical calendar… a little bereft and a little adrift. Due to my call, and the nature of my work, while I am a member of a congregation, I’m not there very often and I feel kind of like a fringe member.
I’m in worship at the congregation where I am a member about once a month, at the most. I help out occasionally, but I don’t feel as connected to the life, rhythm and work of the congregation as I did as a lay person or as a congregational pastor. As I read the research, though, this is not ‘fringe’ membership to many folks. Once a month is considered regular worship attendance, and people have less loyalty to institutions than they used to have.
Welcoming people into our spaces and fellowship and service takes intention and attention. How are we welcoming the members and friends and new folks this Holy Week and Easter? How are we sharing who we are as communities of faith in ways that invite people to participate and to join in ways that may be new to them? How open are we to seeing belonging and connection in new and different ways?
Jesus always had his eye on the fringes – for people who did not fit into the mold of what the ‘in’ crowd looked like or sounded like. As disciples of Jesus, we are called to see through Christ’s eyes and notice and welcome all – those on the fringes most of all.
September 18, 2018
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