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  • Mar12Fri

    ‘What is the church?’

    March 12, 2021

    This past week we marked the passing of a year since we have been under some form or another of restrictions related to the Covid-19 pandemic.  This year and its limitations have created a new way of doing things in practically every slice of our lives, including the church.  I know that being without the regular gatherings for worship, programs, studies, activities and fellowship has impacted many of you dramatically.  This past Thursday I was on another ZOOM session with the Vibrant Churches organization and several other CRCNA and RCA church leaders.  The session presentation was led by David Fitch, a pastor and professor at Northern Seminary in Illinois.  A few of us here at Bethel heard him speak in London a few years ago.  

    Fitch underscored several important points.  One is our need as church communities to simply acknowledge just how great an upheaval we have experienced in the last year.  It has not been simple, easy or without great challenge to think about, be or do ‘church’ as we have come to know it. A second important point that Fitch brought forward is that this moment in time is yet another opportunity for followers of Jesus to revisit the “big questions” of ‘What is the church?’ ‘Why do we need the church? and then upon answering those two questions, asking about the ‘how’ of the church moving forward.  Another pair of Fitch’s emphases landed on the importance of presence and of practice.  We are a community of practices (worship, preaching, prayer, reaching out to the poor, etc.).  We are also to be people who ‘incarnate’ the gospel.  It brings to mind the straightforward call to be like Jesus, connecting with the paraphrase of John 1:14 “The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighbourhood.” (The Message). That in part means that pandemic conditions or not, we are always called to re-examine the reason for our existence and always called to be the presence of Christ, wherever we are, whatever our context or neighbourhood. - EGN

     

    To access Pastor’s Eric’s regular COVID-19 MEDITATIONS, click here … http://www.bethel-crc.ca/blog/covid-19-meditations/