Friday E-News | April 12, 2024

by Simon Mainwaring on April 12, 2024

Dear saints,

This week we have held two home gatherings that in a way span the life of our community: one for people new to All Saints' and still finding their way in through the front door, and the other a gathering of what we call Cornerstone, a community of people who intend to leave a legacy to All Saints' when they go on to glory. As it turns out, not everyone who belongs to Cornerstone has been a parishioner for decades. Some are fairly new themselves, yet each of them has said that the value All Saints' has for them exceeds their own lifetimes. 

That is, at its heart an unselfish act—to give of ourselves to something we will not gain any benefit from. It is of course what we have all been thinking about and praying over these past several weeks as we ponder the future of faith on our block. Yesterday we sent out a mass text to the whole parish—yes it is from us, so please do go ahead and use it to complete the survey. The survey will close on Monday. Reading through the vast diversity of responses to that survey, and the input from town halls, home gatherings, and the free form online comments, it is clear to me that we are a community that cares deeply about a future we will eventually not be part of. We care about people yet to call this place their church home, and thanks be to God for that. 

I wonder if you have had the chance to expand that kind of thinking to other areas of your life? Do your children or other loved ones and friends know your priorities for your own legacy? Have you ever thought about planning your funeral with them, or jotting down notes of what you might want your eulogy to say about you? It may sound morbid, but ask yourself this: if you don't tell those most important to you in your life what matters most to you, who will?

German theologian Paul Tillich called theology the pursuit of answers to ultimate questions. Church should be a place where we can foster that kind of thinking. If someone else doesn't know what you hold to be of ultimate concern, then why not share those precious insights with someone who would treasure them. Not all legacies are made of capital or concrete. In fact, the most important ones are not. 

If all of this raises your blood pressure, remember that there is ice cream at church this Sundae Sunday, so join me at the toppings bar and we can chat about the great hereafter between helpings. 

With gratitude for you,

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