Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
As the calendar turns to November, my mind naturally turns toward Thanksgiving. I’d like to use my article this month to share my appreciation of something I am very thankful for: you! As the saints of God who form the community of St. Paul’s, you have been a blessing in my life.
I came across a poem recently, titled “The Last Beatitude.” It’s written by Malcom Guite, a priest in the Church of England:
And blessèd are the ones we overlook;
The faithful servers on the coffee rota,
The ones who hold no candle, bell or book
But keep the books and tally up the quota,
The gentle souls who come to ‘do the flowers’,
The quiet ones who organise the fete,
Church sitters who give up their weekday hours,
Doorkeepers who may open heaven’s gate.
God knows the depths that often go unspoken
Amongst the shy, the quiet, and the kind,
Or the slow healing of a heart long broken
Placing each flower so for a year’s mind.
Invisible on earth, without a voice,
In heaven their angels glory and rejoice.
How often we forget to express our gratitude, particularly for the things and people we sometimes take for granted. So thank you, St. Paul’s. Thank you to those of you whose contributions are often unseen, like the altar guild and counters, cooking and serving teams, setup and clean-up crews. Thank you to our ushers, our choir members, our communion assistants,
and our Sunday School teachers. Thank you to those who serve on committees and council.
Thank you to all of you for praying for, supporting, and loving one another in this community of faith. Without even one of us, the community suffers. Because we are all needed, and we are all important—to God and to each other.
So thank you, St. Paul’s! Thank you for praying, for worshiping, for sharing, for serving, for blessing one another with your marvelous gifts. Perhaps the Apostle Paul says it best (as he often does): “I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel” (Philippians 1:4-5).