It has been a season of reunion gatherings at our church.
Through reunions called “funerals” lives are remembered, strands of relationship and being are celebrated, and gratitude and grief are named.
As pastor, I am able to feel the coming-home of children raised in the church. For perhaps the first time they sit in a pew without their father or their mother by their side. The jarring is so real. Powerfully, the sanctuary holds their beloved yet; it always will.
Picture boards showing big fish and wide grins bear witness to a singular life. The innocent hope shining through wedding photos and the rascally delights of play bear witness to the unfolding of story and heart.
Friends and co-workers, long-lost relatives and church companions share sugar and coffee and a need to bear witness.
The mystery that is life, death, and resurrection. Together we bow before the enormity of it all.
The church writ large flops about in a scramble for relevance. We sometimes chase after the latest gimmick that will settle our anxieties about decline.
Would that we would cease the scramble and remember that the center of our being is reunion: reunion with the beating heart of the Holy, reunion with the ongoing presence, power and guide that is Christ Jesus, reunion with the promise that in the midst of life God longs love for each and all.
The church exists in order to facilitate reunion.
Through baptisms and funerals, faith groups and worship, we exist to host reunion.
Holy work, that.