Friday E-News | February 23, 2024

by Simon Mainwaring on February 23, 2024

Dear saints,

A late mentor of mine used to take his vestry on retreat each year and ask this singular question to help them to get to know one another on the first night: "When did Jesus become more than a name for you?"

He would put them into pairs and they would spread themselves across the retreat campus in the warm evening sun of coastal California sharing a story from their lives, the significance of which never ceased to astound both the hearer and the speaker. 

To bend the title of Stephen Prothero's book, Jesus is not one. Jesus is manifold, not simply because so are we in this beautifully diverse human family, but because you and I don't remain the same along our life's journey. 

Who was Jesus to you when you were a child?

I can vividly recall the Jesus I knew as a child chorister, standing in the choir stalls vaguely out of breath at the end of Stanford's Te Deum, with the words "O Lord, in Thee have I trusted. Let me never be confounded," still ringing in my ears. That was Jesus. The one in whom I trusted. 

That is still true today, but Jesus has become so much more. 

I hope and pray that All Saints' is a place in your life where your vision of Jesus is being deepened and enriched. If it isn't, try turning to the person next to you on Sunday and ask them when Jesus became more than a name to them. You'll be amazed at what you'll hear. 

For the gift of our multiplicity, thanks be to God.


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