Greetings from Pastor Shannon
I hardly think it’s an exaggeration to call 2016 one of the worst years ever from a worldly standpoint. Even in the waning days of the year, we continue to say goodbye to luminaries and beloved members of our tight-knit community taken from our lives far too soon. We also struggle to stand firm in the wake of tectonic shifts in our government and in the way people relate to one another on the ground. As a church that lives in several intersections of marginality, we can’t help but wonder what impact a new administration that has positioned itself against the interests of people of color, women, immigrants, the poor, the disabled, the LGBTQ community, and those who do not embrace its ideologies will have on those groups.
But a new year, as always, brings a new hope. More importantly, the new year that we have already entered as Christ followers should be is an enduring reminder of the unfailing hope and promise that comes from worshiping the eternal, risen Christ. Our work has not become any easier, but it continues to be important. We must continue to follow Jesus into the margins, to echo Jesus’ repudiation of the power structures that trample on the poor and disenfranchise those to whom Jesus would give the kingdom of heaven itself.
My prayer for each of us is that in this new month and onward into the new year, we will carry new hope and energy to disrupt the centers of power that distract from and dilute Christ’s never-changing message. I pray that we will recommit to unabated, unapologetic discipleship and prophetic witness of Christ’s work in the world.
If you are new to our community, I hope that you will come and see and join our efforts to build God’s kingdom of love, justice, and grace here on Earth.
Let this be a happy, productive, and Christ-filled new year for us all! Be blessed and rest in the depthless love of God the Creator, God the Word, and God the Holy Breath.