This Week at Trinity, Beamsville
Friday, June 8, 2018
This week our national church has started their weekly e-post of a piece called ‘Ask the Nominees’. I know it sounds a little on the dry side, but it’s all about preparing us to welcome, and specifically for the delegates to this summer’s General Council in Oshawa to vote for, the next Moderator of The United Church of Canada. While things may change between now and General Council’s start in July, at the moment there are nine women and men who have let their names stand for this vital place of leadership. I suspect they’re all equal parts honoured and excited, and maybe a little bit scared, too… all of which seems natural, and good.
Whomever is chosen to be our next Moderator will come in to a significant time of change, and presumably restructure for our denomination as a whole. Also on the docket for GC 43 are governance remits that will alter the way we have functioned since our beginning in 1925. It would be the day’s understatement to say that many are feeling unsure about it all, but I will also say, with humble confidence, that I believe the changes are necessary, full of promise, and overflowing with possibility for our shared future.
So how does a congregation like ours, in this beautiful but seemingly far-from-General-Council space, look to the future, even as we rejoice in the present, and give great thanks for the past? Well, we have an enormous birthday party, that’s what we do. No joke. As we’ve done for the last number of years, we’ll gather this Sunday after worship, for a congregation wide celebration of all of our beginnings. With 12 delicious cakes (and a batch of equally delicious gluten-free cupcakes), we’ll sit this time according to the Chinese Zodiac, and have a chance to get to know each other a little bit more. It won’t be long or elaborate, but it will ground us in all that is right and true about being church together: shared life, shared faith, shared joy in each other’s presence, shared sustenance, and shared abundance. What better way to end a Sunday service, strengthened to move boldly into all that is still to come.
And please don’t forget what will precede all the sweets: as we’ve also done for the last 3 years, we’ll mark this Anniversary of The United Church of Canada with the joyful reception of New Members by Transfer. This year there are 8 women and men, joining us from United Church congregations across the province – and we are so blessed by their presence and their choice. Here, in this place, they’ve chosen to say they are part of this church family. They bring their experience, their leadership, their stories and their faith. And here, on this Sunday, we will say in response, that there is no better way to move into our future, together.
With love to you all,
“…grant us the hope of the same Spirit in all our life and worship that we may expect great things from thee,
and attempt great things for thee…”
(from the Inaugural Service of The United Church of Canada, June 10, 1925)