RISE UP! Last month, I spent some time in Chicago working with the Planning Team for the 2015 ELCA Youth Gathering. They needed help formulating a transportation plan for an event unlike any of the previous gatherings ever held. The theme for the gathering is “Rise Up!” It is more a word of hope for the people of Detroit who are trying to “rise up” from the ashes of a storm not like Katrina, but an economic storm just as devastating. As we are discovering in our own recovery, the city of Detroit faces its own challenges with race, poverty, housing, and education.
The gathering has transitioned this triennial event to be more of a transformational experience for our young people as they learn about justice issues and how they can make a difference now and not just in the future.
That theme had me thinking about Grace and the transformation that is in the process of happening with us. What might we do to make a difference right here in New Orleans. What justice issues do we see that we can address that will make a difference right now? These are the questions we should be asking of ourselves as we transform the future of our church. But while you are asking these questions, don’t forget to keep being the church you are—a church full of grace and truth as we read in 1st chapter of John.
The theme also reminds me that we will soon enter into the holiest of weeks as we approach the cross and hear these very words from the empty tomb . . . rise up and see that God is creating something new! God is ever-present in our lives . . . His voice is still there telling us to . . . rise up no matter what aspect of life has come to a close . . . rise up and see what God has in store for us! So, please rise up from the couch, your work, whatever else it is that keeps you from being in worship and come to Grace during Holy Week and Easter Sunday.
April 13 – Passion Sunday @ 10:00 AM
April 17 – Maundy Thursday @ 7:00 PM
April 18 – Good Friday Tenebrae Service @ 7:00 PM
April 20 – Easter Sunday @ 10:00 AM
Keep the faith . . .