I love the church, and I specifically love the church I am privileged to be a part of. Each week, I see more and more transformation taking place whether it is the way people are interacting with one another, the concerns they are bringing with them, the ways in which issues like immigration reform are being raised, the new faces in the congregation, the phone calls I get between Sundays about prayers being answered, the young couple who came with their infant baby yesterday because they want him to be baptized, or the two 90+ year-olds who have just gotten new Bibles because they have fallen in love again with the reading of scripture. Something is happening at Mount Vernon Place - not just with our buildings - but with us - and I am glad to be able to witness it.
And while we have a ways to go to reach N.T. Wright's description of the church, I would love to have someone describe our church this way:
"It's a place of welcome and laughter, of healing and hope, of friends and family and justice and new life. It's where the homeless drop in for a bowl of soup and the elderly stop by for a chat. It's where one group is working to help drug addicts and another is campaigning for global justice. It's where you'll find people learning to pray, coming to faith, struggling with temptation, finding new purpose, and getting in touch with a power to carry that purpose out. It's where people bring their own small faith and discover, in getting together with others to worship the one true God, that the whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts."
N.T. Wright, Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense, New York: HarperCollins, 2006, 123.