Faith: Laugh, Love, And Serve

Photo Via SFGN

We are in the Season After Epiphany or, as our Roman brothers and sisters say, “Ordinary Time.” To understand this time of year it’s helpful to think of the not so ordinary. We’re not waiting for Christmas, as in Advent. And Christmastide itself has, it seems, long since passed, but it’s not yet Lent and certainly not Easter.

We’re in that other 60+% of the year. The liturgical color is Green — perhaps best understood as a sign we should focus on growing spiritually and in good character by deepening our reflection on the mystery of the Incarnation — not just about God and divine love becoming embodied in Jesus Christ but also about how we embody Christ for others. 

Anglicans and Episcopalians have a thoroughly incarnational theology and, so, are naturally attracted to the view expressed in a poem attributed to Teresa of Avila, a 16th Century Spanish mystic and nun:

Christ has no body now on earth but yours,

            No hand but yours,

            No feet but yours.

Yours are the eyes through which to look out 

            Christ’s compassion to the world;

Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing

            Good;

Yours are the hands with which he is to bless men

            Now. 

We at St. Nicholas are fond of saying that we try not to take ourselves too seriously because there is a God and it’s not us; so we are free to laugh, love, and serve. We do, however, take our baptismal responsibilities very seriously; so we strive to see and serve Christ in others. We do this in a variety of ways.

Our Holy Grill mobile food trailer has served over 38,000 hot, spirit-lifting breakfast and dinner meals to the homeless and working poor. Each month our Holy Provisions mobile food bank distributes 20,000 pounds of food (produce, canned goods, frozen meats) from South Dade County to North Palm Beach County, supplying over 40 different feeding programs, benefiting families with children, seniors, veterans, and people with disabilities (4,000 people each month).

Through our Senior Farm Stands we make fresh produce available to seniors on fixed incomes so they are not choosing between eating or buying prescription medicine at the end of the month. 

These are just some of the ways we lovingly serve. If you would like to devote your hands and feet to God’s work, if you would like to demonstrate by your compassion that heaven is near for those less fortunate, then please join us.

We welcome people of all faiths and no faith, as long as you have a caring heart. And, regardless of whether you volunteer, party with us. Tropical Wave (the ensemble of the Gay Men’s Chorus) will appear in concert at St. Nicholas at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 22. Admission is just $10 at the door. A Champagne Reception will follow the concert; because we want to laugh and love, knowing Ash Wednesday is February 26th, signaling the start of Lent.

 

The Rev. Mark Andrew Jones, BSG

Rector, St. Nicholas Episcopal Church – Pompano Beach