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Sacrament of Hope

November 11th, 2016 by Stephen Bauman

It’s a beautiful morning as a write, and I’m grateful for that, but is it my imagination, or does the world seem different than it did a few days ago?  Many are confounded and disoriented by the election shock, and I suspect that’s true for voters on all sides, though for differing reasons.

What does this mean?  What shall be done?  We will have weeks and months to digest and discern.  Still, the followers after the way of Jesus will stay anchored to their core mission: loving God above all things and their neighbors as themselves—all of them, especially the most vulnerable.  And they will retain a clear focus on how this works out morally and ethically in their commitments and behaviors, and as citizens of a great nation.  We know who we are and whose we are, and how faith, hope, and love continue to abide.

Is it a great irony or surprising serendipity that this coming Sunday has been designated as the day we receive financial pledges of support from our members and friends under the banner, Hope and a Future Sunday?  Here’s the thing that occurs to me: this provides a good gift, an excellent chance for each of us to stake a claim on the future and our commitment to the values that we seek to advance in our community: acceptance, equality, and opportunity for all of God’s diverse family.  It inspires tangible action, something to do, a time and a place to affirm what’s best about us, and our church and nation.

A sacrament of hope—that’s what we can make of it.  Hearing the call of our better angels, we can rise from our seats, and in a spirit of peace we can join sisters and brothers in a common bond of faith and hope as we present our pledge before God and one another.  It’s best if we can do this in person, especially this year, when we can see each other, affirming our many diversities while united in common cause.

Following the 11:00 a.m. service, we can create thousands of meals through Stop Hunger Now!—another tangible expression of our shared commitment to loving God and neighbor.  Bring the family, and it’s a great way to include friends, especially this year.

If you cannot be physically present make known your solidarity with our good and hopeful cause here.

I remain profoundly grateful for your friendship and commitment, your goodwill and generosity.  There is much to be done.  Fortunately, we have each other—and the enduring presence of God who loves us beyond our wildest imaginings.

Stephen Bauman

Rev. Dr. Stephen P. Bauman is the Senior Minister at Christ Church.