We have chosen four priorities for next year, as we move forward as a congregation, free from debt and filled with the Holy Spirit. They are: worship; belonging; children, youth and family; and, social justice. These were the things that emerged from the dream dreams session of our Parish Festival: This is YOUR Church, held in the spring.
We will hold four sessions called "pot luck with a purpose," to address each priority in turn. The first session will be on November 17 and we will discuss social justice. One of the reasons we've chosen this one first is that the Rev'd Madonna Fradsham has indicated that she will be withdrawing from her ministry with social action in the new year. To be clear, she's not leaving us; she will remain a vital force within congregational life and thankfully she will continue her ministry as a deacon.
The other three priorities will be discussed at pot lucks early in 2014.
In thinking about how to approach the first of these pot lucks I wanted to consider how we plan to help those who knock at our door or call us on the phone asking for help. We also have a history of reaching out to members of our congregation who we know have needs, but who might never ask us for help. And we should consider the broader question of how we can make things better for everyone.
Then it suddenly occurred to me that these three questions would make a good format for all the pot luck. So, as we consider our ministry as a worshipping community; as children, youth and families; and as a people who want to help people feel a strong sense of belonging to St. Paul's – the following questions should prove helpful. How is it for others? How is it for us? How can it be better for everyone?
When I survey the wondrous congregation of St. Paul's Church I see a community blessed with determination, with every skill and resource needed to do God's will in this place. We need only to latch onto that firm trust in God's Holy Spirit that brought us this far.