God’s grace be with you, parish,
With broken hearts, we will gather for worship on this Reformation Sunday (in person and online, 8:30 am and 10:30 am). At 10:30 am, I will facilitate a prayer observance before leaving the sanctuary with children and youth to help them process some of what they are feeling at this time. Diaconal Minister Richard Gross (a familiar Lewiston voice) will guide the service while I am with the church school.
We are all grieving and trying to make sense of the unthinkable, but God is with us, and we are both community and family of faith together. By joining hearts in prayer and worship, we heal one another with the grace and help of God. I want you to know that our Bishop, Peggy Johnson, who has devoted much of her life to ministry with the deaf, and our District Superintendent Arlene Tully, called to pray with and for us. Indeed, I have heard from scores of colleagues from every part of our Annual Conference.
Tomorrow (Saturday), volunteers will cluster at High Street Food Cupboard to distribute food to those in need. Thank you to all who are helping with this. We continue to pray for our civic leaders, law enforcement, medical community, first responders, and other community leaders. In particular, we pray for the injured and the families of all who lost their lives in the Wednesday night tragedy. We also pray for those who struggle with mental illness, and those who work tirelessly with them.
We call ourselves the Many Waters District, but this week our community waters flow with the tears of many. Let us close with words from Washington Irving: “There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. they speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.”
We are L/A strong, today and every day, held in the hands of the Living God,
Pastor Steve Bascom