“What we do in a particular liturgy must come from within—not some decorative element that we apply from outside. The heart of authentic liturgy is always the inner reality of faith embodied, using fragile human forms that are our stewardship of the gifts of grace.” –Louis Weil
Often, when I’m asked what is an Episcopalian, I find myself referring to the Book of Common Prayer. There’s no getting away from how foundational worship is to the identity of Episcopalians as a part of the Anglican heritage. Where our theology is most apparent, where our hearts and minds are directed, where beauty and joy are to be found, is most deeply expressed in the liturgies of the Book of Common Prayer. I’ve been thinking a lot about this book, and these liturgies, as we clergy types find ourselves struggling, burdened, frantic, with ways to connect the people together without the use of our buildings.
It is as if we are the blind man in the gospel we heard on the 4th Sunday in Lent (John 9.1-41). We’re grieving what we no longer have, we’re trapped by an experience in which there’s no clearly defined end, and we’re unable to see a way forward. Lent can be like that; life can be like that. Jesus heals that blind man by the simple gesture of a loving gesture and the invitation to trust in what God will do. Our Eucharist, our evening prayer, our compline, all of our worship together is a recognition that God can help us to see too, and what we see is that we belong, that we have a way forward, and that we can help each other.
The truth is all times in our lives are uncertain; none of us know what the next day will bring and moments like this remind us of how little control we ultimately have over the things that we’d like to have control over. But it’s an invitation to see clearly what does matter, who does matter, and why they matter. You matter to God, and in times of physical distancing, we can still gather together on Zoom to remember those prayers create us and form us to be people who see clearly. I hope to see you with us this week as we gather together on Zoom.
This Week on Zoom at https://bit.ly/TCZoom
Tuesday at 6 pm – Check-in
Join Thomas and Kelley on Zoom. This is a time to check-in or just say hello.
Thursday at 5 pm – Lenten Series
We will gather via Zoom to continue our discussion of Money and Possessions by taking a look at the Gospels.
Sunday at 6 pm – Evening Prayer
Join us for Evening Prayer and time to check-in.