Something else happened after the 10 o’clock worship this year. Just as our families gather together from all over around Christmas, so does our church family. This is a picture of a group that called themselves “EPUMC Alumni.” They are all 20-somethings who are back home for Christmas and attended our service. Everyone in this Christmas Eve picture stuck around for over half an hour after the service was over. They wanted to be here.
It is so exciting to stand back and watch and listen to all of these now young men and women who were once all kids growing up at EPUMC.
Watching and listening to them helped me to understand what a church family is about. It helped me to understand in my bones the value of a faith community.
I was talking about this to one of these 20-somethings a couple of years ago when the same thing happened. What she said inspires me. I had expressed a sense of surprise at how many had showed up so willingly. This young woman looked back at me with such a surprised look on her face, that I was embarrassed by my own comment. Then she said, “Pastor Dan! This is our home!”
In a time when so many question the validity of faith communities what that young woman had to say gives me cause to hope. And the hope is not that those pictured here will become active every Sunday attendees at EPUMC someday. No, the hope is that something about their time here has stuck with them and has become something worth coming back home for…
What makes something home is often very hard to put your finger on… maybe for a few of these folks it is the memory of being an angel standing by the manger on Christmas eve or a youth sitting in the back row of the van on a mission trip. Whatever it is, I am grateful to be a part of a church home like EPUMC that they can come home to…
Keep the Faith,