We are the church family of St. Andrew’s, as well as being members of the wider Christian family. You, yes, you — and I — are the church wherever we may be, whatever we do. Others judge the Faith and the Church by what we say and do. Is this too high-flown for you to consider?
You, as you are, are fully acceptable. What enables us is the blessing of God Almighty—Father, Son and Holy Spirit in our consciousness. When we remember this, we are guided and strengthened. When we are distracted, we are drawn back.
We are now in extended formation, as we are in most of the time of our lives. The opportunity to speak of God and our Savior, to do acts of kindness and love and forbearance are always there. In this present COVID-19 situation we are extended for an unusually long period of time. We need to gather at our church home for reunion and refreshment and assurance. Thus we are helped to avoid drifting away into the unbridled habits of creaturely instincts and appetites. What then? This isolation is hard to bear. We hunger to connect with our larger family and be replenished in the sense of our Lord’s nearer presence.
Thanks be to God we can use the devices of so-called advanced civilization to connect us. Thanks be for our rector and the team of liturgical leaders who bring worship in the sanctuary to us. Thanks be for the devoted members of the prayer chain and telephone teams. May we be inspired to reach out in any ways we can to the poor, the sick and the lonely: to make phone calls and send notes, to make wisely chosen donations of money, food and clothing, and in keeping up our pledges as best we can.
Precious family, my blessings and love are with you.
Martin’s note: When I asked Fr. Ed to write something for the Tartan, he sent the above, and also recalled a hymn which was sung frequently at St. Thomas Chapel on the edge of the Texas A&M campus as WWII loomed ahead for him and the other students. It is Hymn #527 in our 1982 Hymnal, and the first line is:
Singing songs of expectation, onward goes the pilgrim band,
through the night of doubt and sorrow, marching to the promised land.
Clear before us through the darkness gleams and burns the guiding light:
trusting God we march together stepping fearless through the night.