This past week, Rev. Kathleen and I joined Bishop Eaton and clergy from across our Diocese of Southeast Florida at our annual Clergy Conference. We engaged in lively discussions about the mission and vision of our diocese, and considered new, emergent patterns of ministry. Our many ministries here at St. Paul’s came to my mind throughout the conference.
When the conversation focused on how we, as the Episcopal Church, can better share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with young adults (something all faith communities consider often), I thought about two of our ministries: our Seekers young adult ministry and our Children, Youth, and Family Ministry.
Our Seekers ministry is one that, as its name implies, welcomes those who are seeking healing, hope, and a deeper sense of purpose in life. Our Seekers are a welcoming community in which we are fed in body, mind, and spirit, and where we feed others. Think of the Last Supper, where after Jesus washed the feet of the Apostles and fed them with the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation, he instructed them to go and do the same. And so it happens…last Saturday, four of our Seekers went to Marathon and helped muck out a homeless shelter that was devastated by Hurricane Irma.
Our Children, Youth, and Family Ministry is like a nourishing tree with many branches. Young parents find support as they nurture their children in the love of Jesus. The young adults of tomorrow, our high schoolers and middle schoolers, find a caring community in which to grow and live their faith in God. Our Church Schoolers discover the wonders of God’s love, made manifest in Word and Sacrament. And now, our newly formed Youth Choir!
What a blessing these ministries are for our church family!