It seems we're turning the corner.
This is how I feel every year at this time as Winter turns to Spring. There is new pep in our step as we begin to transition with the season.
This year, however, it seems we are turning the corner in multiple, and more significant, ways.
First, and most notably, when on Tuesday this week, former Mpls police officer, Derek Chauvin, was found guilty on all three charges brought against him for the death of George Floyd. There was a communal and palpable feeling of relief and burden lifted that I could feel as I wept alone in my office upon hearing the verdict read. I could not ignore or discount this feeling, nor did I wish to.
The words to a favorite Irish hymn of mine, Canticle of the Turning (ELW 723), immediately popped into my mind as they became real to me like never before. I encourage you to click here to listen to the hymn and the lyrics closely. The words to the chorus say, "My heart shall sing of the day you bring. Let the fires of your justice burn. Wipe away all tears, for the dawn draws near, and the world is about to turn."
God's burning justice, peace, and mercy, at the moment at least, feel within reach. Today, and every day, is a new dawn as the world continues to turn. Hold on to that hope as our own tears, and the tears of our communities, state, nation, and world are wiped away, and all begin to heal.
On another significant level, COVID-19 is still very present in our local and global communities. However, with the vaccination rollout increasing, it seems that with the pandemic too, a new dawn draws near. We continue to do our part, be smart, care for one another, and hold onto hope for a semblance of life as we knew it pre-Covid. We'll get there, together.
On a smaller, but no less significant, scale, it feels we are turning a corner at Saint Paul Lutheran, as well. A new dawn has come and our congregation has begun to turn the page into a new chapter. Plans by our Church Council and Covid Response Team have been made for the re-opening of our church building and sanctuary. You can read all about them here.
Weekly worship continues to be exciting and inspiring with many reasons to rejoice, give thanks, and celebrate, seemingly on a weekly basis. Recent weeks have included Easter Sunday, a Hymnsing, and the Church Council's and my official installation. Looking ahead to this Sunday and beyond we have two baptisms, the Rite of Confirmation, Janet Brainard's Celebration of Life, Graduate Recognition, Volunteer Recognition, New Member reception, and the kick-off of an eight-week intergenerational preaching, teaching, and service oriented series, entitled, "Journey Together" beginning on Sunday, July 11.
So you can see why this year, especially, there is new pep in our step. You can see why the words to this favorite hymn of mine have struck a new chord within me. A chord, which on many levels, hasn't been struck in awhile. For that, I am grateful. I pray a similar chord has been struck within you, and within our congregation, as well.
We'll see you in church!