Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Bible Study... don't miss it!

Bible Study will be Monday 7/16.  We'll be talking about Noah and the Ark, which is just about one of the coolest stories in the Bible.  Noah's got it all: Action, Romance, Destruction, Redemption!  Don't miss out!!
All are welcome. Bring friends!  No strings attached.  7:00 PM in the chapel!

Influencing the Whole Church

I think most people don't really believe that what we do at StEAM really does have results beyond our boundaries.  I think we believe we come to Church on Sundays, and then go about our lives and it doesn't change much.  But we do change our world, every human life changes the whole world.  Our coming together on Sunday is about more than just an hour on Sunday (or Bible Study) its about changing the world, little by little.

Some examples:
  • Fr. Paul has shared stories about residents at Vanadium Woods who do not come to church but who have told him how glad they are that we're there.  Maybe they go to church off-site, or maybe they just like the idea of a church in the chapel, or maybe they feel like it brings something to the greater Vanadium Woods community.  Whatever it is, they like that we're there and they take the time to say so.
  • The folks who come to the Roman Catholic service every other week are getting comfortable with our presence.  The ladies in particular will often take a moment to say hello or admire the altar flowers.  One of my favorite moments this Sunday was when their Lay Eucharistic Minister took a moment to wave across the parking lot as I was coming in.  Its not every church that can so easily greet our eccumenical colleagues on the way to the altar. 
  • St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (Roman Catholic) has gotten excited enough about our mission to donate some snazzy altarware.  Again, its not every day that generosity between branches of the Christian faith comes so readily.
  • St. John the Evangelist is an enthusiastic participant in our project, serving as our partner parish.  They're a recent church plant themselves, so now they get to partner with another newer church! That's pretty cool.
  • Everywhere I go people ask about what we're up to at St.EAM.  They mostly ask to be polite, but as soon as I start to tell them about what we do, their face soften, their eyes widen and some form of "wow!" or "cool!" escapes their lips.  Recently, at Provincial Assembly, the priest who is overseeing a similar church plant in Chicago asked us what was the long term plan for St.EAM.  When I replied that we don't intend to move into a free-standing building but instead "when we outgrow our current space, some of the non-residential people will hopefully want to plant another congregation in the next residence up the road... I'd love to see a congregation in every retirement community and hospital in Western Pennsylvania"... when I said that, he simply and speechlessly hugged me. 
  • And then there's Tabora, and all the folks we pray for and care about. 
  • And finally there is the community of StEAM, where you all are getting to know one another, become closer friends with one another.  Beverly, before she moved out, reflected on how much positive impact our life together has on our individual lives.  I hope you feel the same way. 
So however small we seem, don't forget that we can have a big impact.  Not just in our little neighborhood, but far reaching.  You are blessed... now go be a blessing to others.