Encouragement for the Journey – 24/07/11

An inclusive Christian community in Auckland, New Zealand

Encouragement for the Journey – 24/07/11

Greetings Fellow Traveller,

Today we have the privilege of formally welcoming into the membership at St Aidans, Andre and Helene Muller on transfer from Humewood Methodist Church Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Whenever I participate in one of these happenings, I am reminded of the importance and preciousness of the community of faith the Church. Sometimes our focus and energy seems to be more on the building than on people. This is understandable, for we do have a responsibility to care for that which has been entrusted to us from previous generations, so we can pass on to others.

However, our prime focus, must always be people. I am reminded of that Maori proverb;

He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata! He tangata! He tangata!

What is the most important thing in the world? Tis man! Tis man! Tis man!

Of course man means human kind, not just the male gender.

When I read Jesus’ ministry, I see a man who demonstrated the power of putting people before tradition, offering dignity and compassion to all, especially those living on the edge of society and being a voice for the voiceless.

Indeed we seek to care for those who are part of our community of faith, and here is the key, we also seek to be a welcoming and inclusive community, along with serving others outside the community of faith. For this community of faith is not the sole place where we practice our faith, for religious life is not limited to the prayers we say in church or at home. It includes the life we live outside the church day in and day out.

I leave you with a question that I often ask myself: what is it about my relationship with Jesus that this community cannot do without?

Meanwhile Peace

Alf