With urgency, let us dare to go forth to be and experience the heart of God in the world…

FORGING OUR FUTURE


A Letter from Pastor Andy

June 3, 2020

Dear University Park Family,
I’m hearing from people throughout the congregation about the pain and sadness of the past few days – the ongoing emotional strain of the pandemic, coupled with the deeply alarming and urgent issues of racism that have been once again thrust to the fore. No matter where we are on the political spectrum, it is clear that our nation remains deeply divided and wounded by what historians have called the U.S.A.’s “original sin” of slavery and white supremacy, and it is natural to ask what we can do to help heal the bitterness in which our nation is embroiled.

In the liturgical calendar, this weekend is Trinity Sunday. The theologian Karl Rahner once remarked that if the doctrine of the Trinity were suddenly to be erased from Christian theology, most Christians wouldn’t notice. Yet the idea of the Trinity was viewed as pivotal in the first few centuries of Christianity, so important that major theological (and sometimes martial) battles were fought over it. As abstract as all of this may sound, it bears directly on questions of racism and the broken relationships that have brought our country and our world to its present state. So I hope you’ll join us for our worship online as we reflect on how we might be part of healing the wounds and mistrust that separate us.

This Sunday, we’ll also celebrate the sacrament of communion in worship. If you’d like to participate, you can buy some bread and grape juice before the service. Just as we did last month, we’ll offer a communion liturgy and invite everyone to participate at home. It’s not the same thing as being together, but in the timeless ritual of eucharist, we can celebrate God’s presence with all of us.

I appreciate the encouragement and the continued donations coming in to help support our nonprofit partners. We continue to receive gifts of socks and underwear to be given out to our neighbors without homes, as well as donations of food for Metro Caring, the food pantry with which we have a long relationship. Tuesday of this week, several of us from the congregation met with a group of Metro Caring representatives online, and they told us about the sharp increase in demand for their services since the beginning of the pandemic. We continue to seek ways to help and support their work, and that of our other nonprofit partners.

Thanks for all you do to support our shared ministry. Please feel free to contact me at the church or by email: adunning@uparkumc.org.

Grace and Peace,
Andy

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