When the Hardwood of a Pew Becomes More Important Than the Hardwood of The Cross.

Ah, I am wondering, did anyone hear about the RETREAT CENTER?

It seems that we had some really big things happening to our parish: new roadways are coming, a possible homeless outreach in Kensington, a the very real possibility of private-public partnership for our undeveloped land, and the gift of a 56+ acre retreat center! However, we seem to be hung up on the wooden pews.

I also hoped that we would all be concerned with the those folks who attend Saint Miriam, but also fail to give a regular financial donation to our work to enable us to reach these, and more goals to come, that God has blessed us with as a community. We have a vibrant parish that is rapidly becoming a family-centered parish with a strong focus – and dedication – to the future: our children. This takes resources and the pressures on your ministry team, and me as your pastor, are immense.

While we are not asking for anyone to take away our lot in life, as it is our calling, we do deserve your support, acknowledgement, and willingness to lift the burden a little. We haver never once asked for equal giving, but we have shown the way to equal sacrifice, even among our clergy. After all, a heavy burden is light when shared.

Despite the obstacles of the last few years, our school and children’s programs are flourishing. Our parish is growing. Our dedication to the dead and their care at our cemetery has never been stronger. Our outreach is extending further into areas that need our prayer and support, but more importantly, our hands, feet, and voices. Unlike so many parishes, we have not allowed ourselves to shrink away from the ills of the world, rather we have doubled-down on our willingness to be with them, side-by-side, as we should, to bring the literal church to where they are. And, when they come to our doors, they are flung wide to all! This is what a parish is supposed to be.

Dr. Seuss once gave us no finer words of inspiration when it comes to being dedicated to those who follow us. He wrote, “I know it may seem small and insignificant, but it’s not about what it is, it’s about what it can become. That’s not a seed, any more than you’re just a boy.”  Yes, that is what we do! We know that nothing that we do is insignificant because we focus on what it will one day become. A child, an outreach, and a parish!

From two people in a small rented chapel in a Jewish synagogue in Philadelphia to all that we have now, all because we have never once shrunk away from the mission. And, we know deep down that when the hardwood of a pew becomes more important than the hardwood of The Cross, we will all surely perish.


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