Take a moment to read this followup email from our Community Dinner coordinators, Dee and Ralph Damico:
We had fun at the community dinner last night. The barbeque sandwiches went over well, as well as the potato salad, fruit and dessert.
We fed 69 children, 14 seniors and 18 volunteers, as well as sent over 8 meals to the St. Monica’s recreation center for a grand total of 109.
Thanks so much to our regular volunteers, Noel Horne, Paul and Elizabeth Anderson, George and Laura Harperink, and Maria. We also had help from Bridget and Molly Glover, Megan and Paige Walters, and Jennifer Morris and Paige Walters. Thanks so much. And we also wish to thank the volunteers from St. Simon, Darlene Gray and her workers.
Hope to see you in May.
Dee and Ralph Damico”
Ascension & Holy Trinity Episcopal Church collaborated with St. Simon’s in Lincoln Heights to provide a healthy dinner for 109 individuals needing a healthy meal–109 hungry people! From my imperfect count it looks like we had about thirteen total folks from Ascension & Holy Trinity helping to make this ministry a reality on a busy Tuesday night–simply phenomenal in my eyes!
Have we stopped lately to think about the difference we can make in the world? I know that there’s plenty of heartache in the world and in our own lives. I get that, truly, I do. But in order to be vessels of God’s love and mercy we must look to the good in one another and be willing to make a difference. You and I are capable of making a difference because we know God loves us, and we know God loves the other. In fact, in God’s kingdom there isn’t “other.”
Our lives are over programmed today. There are so many “opportunities” out there that many of us seldom take the time to sit back and reflect on God’s presence in our lives and on how we share and receive that goodness. I want to encourage us to see our lives as one big ministry. Ascension & Holy Trinity has a ton of ministry options for people to partake, but what if your schedule doesn’t permit you to help in the once a month Tuesday night Community Dinners? Well, you may have the ministry of being mommy or daddy helping your child with their homework or any other number of parental roles. Maybe you or a loved one is suffering an illness, whether it be cancer or otherwise. Can we consider the role of supporter to be a ministry? Or, can we consider the act of living with a life-altering illness a ministry? I sure hope we can because God’s love and compassion and mercy is capable of being reflected through anything we enjoy or endure.
Our monthly Community Dinners are one ministry of Ascension & Holy Trinity Episcopal Church. I want our parishioners involved in our “church” ministries because I consider these church ministries to be life-giving and transformative for the individual and for our faith community at large. And..and, I/we need to realize and remember that ministry isn’t confined to our parish, the Episcopal Church, the Presbyterians, Methodists, Baptists, Valley Temple, etc…We need both, ministries offered from the church and to see our lives as ministries.
For some of my readers this idea of life as ministry will be considered a radical idea, and for many this idea will seem rather obvious. To both parties and everyone in between, wherever you are is all right as long as you are living from a place of love and a willingness to grow. It is Wednesday afternoon, the week before Holy Week. Tonight there is a huge presentation in our Parish Hall about El Hogar, a ministry based in Honduras. I’ve heard from many who won’t be able to attend for one reason or another. I’ve heard from several who shall be able to attend. Do I want to see our Parish Hall overflowing? You better believe it! However, I have to trust, we have to trust that those needing to be present to learn about El Hogar will be present. We also have to have the courage and willingness to share our learnings from this evening with our faith community over the coming Sundays.
Ascension & Holy Trinity, you are loved by your rector more than you will ever know or understand. I bid you a beautiful Wednesday afternoon as you consider what ministries you are about this fine day.
In God’s Grace,