Vestry Notes from the Rector’s Warden
The loss of a job leads to a fulfilling and rewarding career change;
A devastating illness leads to a greater understanding of and deepening
relationship with a loved one;
A flooded basement inspires a bright, clean “new” room to enjoy.
Each of these experiences can be considered an ambiguous gift – one that we might never have chosen but for which we are truly grateful. I have had a number of these gifts in my life, and while I never would have chosen them, they have made me a better father, husband, and friend, and perhaps a better person.
As terrible as the pandemic has been, on reflection, it has provided St. David’s with some ambiguous gifts worth noting.
Though we would strongly prefer to worship together, limitations on the size of in-person gatherings have given us opportunities to use our creativity to extend our reach as a parish and to more broadly live into our mission to know God in Jesus Christ and to make Christ known to others. Not only are our Sunday worship services livestreamed and viewed throughout the country and the world, but our small group offerings, including adult education and Bible study, also have national followings.
Similarly, the already impressive music program at St. David’s has been invigorated and expanded through the use of technology to teach, rehearse and ultimately perform beautiful choral compositions, most recently at the Christmas Eve services. While nothing beats Christmas Eve at St. David’s, the virtual performances by the musicians and choirs brought tears to my eyes.
“The outpouring of generosity
from members of our parish in
recognition of the central role
St. David’s plays in supporting our
partners in ministry, both locally
and abroad, has been astounding.”
To me, though, the most significant ambiguous gift of the pandemic for St. David’s is the realization of how important St. David’s is to us and to the community at large. The outpouring of generosity from members of our parish in recognition of the central role St. David’s plays in supporting our partners in ministry, both locally and abroad, has been astounding. The UnFair!, which raised over $136,000 for outreach, is perhaps the most public example, but parishioners have quietly donated tens of thousands of dollars to support parish ministries and those in need in the community at large.
Once COVID-19 is eradicated and the pandemic comes to an end, we will joyfully come together once again to worship and to enjoy each other’s fellowship. Though let’s not forget the ambiguous gifts the pandemic has brought to our parish. Let’s continue to use our time, talents and treasure, and the lessons and skills we’ve been forced to learn in this past year, to touch the lives of our community and the world. Happy New Year!