At St Romero’s this past Sunday morning we received two gifts, and made two decisions.
The first gift was some eggs. Annie O’Reilly brought three hard-boiled eggs from her own chickens! It was an example of God’s goodness, because as I was preparing the homily I had forgotten a story I meant to include, about an 80-year-old woman who walked 100 kilometers to hear Archbishop Romero speak, and brought him two eggs and a one-colone note (worth about forty cents). She brought him those gifts, but she couldn’t get near enough to give them to him. Finally she gave them to another priest who told Monseñor Romero about them, later. And the next Sunday, he thanked her by name in his sermon, and everyone in El Salvador heard about her simple act of love, because the whole country listened to his Masses on the radio. And I would have forgotten to include that story if Annie hadn’t brought those eggs!
At the end of Mass we decided together that Oscar Romero Church will become a member of the Greater Rochester Community of Churches. As an independent church it is especially good that we nurture our links with others who are working to build the world God dreams of, the world where everyone has what they need, where the hungry are fed, the wounded healed, and the captives are set free. Check out their website at http://www.grcc.org. To join, they request a donation equal to a dollar for every congregant. There were ten of us present last Sunday, so we’ll send them ten dollars.
…and we have the money to do that, because of our second gift: our very first donation. We haven’t been taking up a collection, both because being in borrowed space we have no expenses (and I, working several part time jobs as a chaplain and as Peacemaker for the Presbyterians, am free to donate my time) – what church gets to start without having to worry about money? What a gift! God is so good. – and because most of us aren’t people with money to give, anyway. But now we are collectively the proud owners of $50, so after church we made another decision. 10% of it we’ll give away (and sometime soon we’ll talk about where to give our tithes when we have them to give) - $10 goes for our GRCC membership, and the rest we will use to open an account, in the expectation that we will use it for advertising. So there you have it: our first financial report!
The most important thing any of us gives to the church is ourselves: our time, our patience, our energy, our love, our presence. St. Romero’s seems to me like a tiny diamond, shining so beautifully already. I am so grateful for this little community!!!!
Two of us, Eli Woodbeck and I, will be going to El Salvador in April for a study trip with the Cielo Azul group from the Simple Way community in Philadelphia. I am so excited to find a group of people who are doing what I’ve wanted to do for years, bringing groups of people to Santa Ana to meet with my friends Ruth and Alex there. Hooray! If you are interested in joining this trip, it is not too late. All the information can be found at http://cieloazulfund.blogspot.com/2011/01/updates-for-our-cielo-azul-study-trip.html?spref=fb
Our little group that meets for breakfast at Pat’s Coffee Mug on Clinton Ave at 8 am on Wednesday mornings to practice our Spanish will not meet this week, February 2, because of the predicted storm. You are welcome to join us next week, instead!
Love to all, Chava
“…our world is desperately in need of lovers, people who are building deep, genuine relationships with fellow strugglers along the way, and who actually know the faces of the people behind the issues they are concerned about.”
Shane Claiborne, The Irresistible Revolution (Zondervan, 2006) p 295-6
Oscar Romero Church
An Inclusive Church in the Catholic Tradition
Mass: Sundays, 11 am
St Joseph's House of Hospitality, 402 South Ave, Rochester NY 14603