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A Message From Pastor Heather

This Sunday we are celebrating All Saints Day in worship. This day is a time when we remember those who have gone before us into glory.  We remember through the reading of names, those from this church who have died in the past year, but we also remember any saint from our lives through the lighting of candles.

John Wesley, founder of Methodism, held All Saints Day in high regard. In his journals he notes his love for the day calling it a “festival I truly love” and a “comfortable day”.  I echo Wesley’s regard for All Saints Day. It is a beautiful time of remembering and giving thanks for the Great Cloud of Witnesses that have gone before us.

All Saints Day always reminds me of the people in my own life who created a legacy I have had the privilege to inherit. My grandmother, who lived a life of hard work in order to provide for her family but also found rest in pausing from her labor to enjoy coffee with friends taught me the value of caring for my family while also caring for myself.  My grandfather, who suffered from muscular dystrophy, taught me how to suffer and still show love, grace, and kindness.  I wish he had not suffered as he did, but I am so grateful for the special moments he shared with me, like reading a book to me, in spite of his pain.  

And then there are the saints in my life that were not a part or my family of origin.  Marda Moore, one of my first spiritual mentors, left me the legacy of believing that the Creator of the universe loves me. What a priceless gift she gave to me.  

In any church, the people who have gone before us have created the community of faith we enjoy today.  They had the vision to build the building, set aside money in endowments, extend the grace of God to the community, study the Bible, pray without ceasing, and steward the church into the future.  Let us remember and give thanks for these saints as we gather together this Sunday for All Saints Day.

Let us also think about the legacy we leave to the people who will come after us. What will they say about the gifts we leave them? I imagine that future generations will tell the story of this church opening its doors to the Interfaith Works Shelter during a pandemic and the legacy of love that leaves in its wake.  Future generations, I think, will talk about the care people at this church share with each other and with the community and how we are a witness to God’s grace. And, our Welcoming Statement, with its intention to embrace ALL people as a part of God’s family, is a commitment for both now and the future to see all people as they truly are - beloved and created in God’s image. 

So, join me this Sunday as we celebrate the saints in our lives and the saints in this church while also looking towards the future that we have been blessed to inherit from those who have gone before us.

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