Since my last Sunday at St. Mary’s, I’ve worshipped four times at New Hope Church in Bend, Oregon, once at the home of dear friends as we blessed their home, a Eucharist at Camp Allen with new clergy, Evening Prayer at Camp Allen with nearly clergy, Eucharist with the Junior Daughters of the King beside the lake at Camp Allen, at St. Helena Convent, Facebook Live Episcopal Worship to Anchor Your Day, in the Agnes Martin Gallery at the Harwood Museum, Morning Mindfulness at the Georgia Museum of Art, and ever so many times from my prayer chair.
Not once in an Episcopal Church.
Except from my prayer chair, all of these were within community. All were full of grace in their own way, and I believe that I was led by the Spirit to each of these holy places to worship God.
As God is teaching me about home, God is also teaching me about church.
One of my favorite descriptions of church is from the second chapter of the book of Act
No longer a layperson who has “joined” a parish, no longer a priest called to serve in a specific parish, now serving in missions and parishes, as invited or sent, I am a peripatetic priest.
Today, as I celebrate twenty-six years of ordination to the priesthood, God is inviting me to reflect on my definition of Church.
From Saddle Blanket by Blanche C. Grant, The Harwood Museum
Church is God’s people gathered, and Jesus gives us an easy bar:
Where two or three are gathered in my name, I am in their midst. (Matthew 18.20)
If my home is in God’s heart, and God’s home is in my heart, then perhaps church is when two or three of us gather in the heart of God, and when we know that God is in our gathered hearts.