I wish I could sit down and write a note to everyone – adherent or member, lay or ordered, of whatever age and stage and place in their life – who is a part of The United Church of Canada.
I think I’d start off each note with the words, “Thank you.”
Thank you for being a part of this part of God’s love, alive in the world.
Thank you for all of the ways that you are part of your community of faith. Thank you for the ways you’ve shared of yourself – not just what you have, but who you are – as part of that group of Jesus’ people. Thank you for the things that have been out front, and for the things behind the scenes, AND for the things that no one knows you’ve offered (well, except you and God.)
Thank you for sharing your time, and your abilities, and your resources; your thoughts and your feelings; your smiles, your tears, your frustrations, your joys; your quiet and calm, and your loud and moving.
Thank you for the ways you have lived your life as a justice-maker, a peace-bringer, an evil-resister, a creation-respecter, a world-mender, a lover, a servant, a beloved child of God, a disciple of Jesus Christ.
Thank you for loving God with all that you are.
Thank you for loving your neighbour
(and for being willing to accept their love.)
Thank you for all that you do,
but, even more than that,
thank you for being who you are.
Yes. Even the times when things get sticky, and frustrations surface, and relationships are fractured, and we have to work again to mend the community and the world – thank you for trying to be the best that God’s love calls out of you.
Especially in this time of pandemic, in this world where the problems of our very human systems and institutions (the church included) are even more evident, and the challenge to be counter-cultural with even more radical hope, and radical grace, and radical hospitality, and overwhelmingly radical love can be daunting…
Yes. If you are reading this… thank *you*.