This past week we started a new “Wednesday Noon Prayers.” Each week hundreds of people come to the church for care of some kind. People come for food, clothing, health screenings, emergency referrals, utility assistance, employment counseling, computer training, community youth programs, and pastoral care. And, of course, we gather on Sundays to worship, share in Spiritual formation discussion classes, and community time. We reach out to serve people in the community and to act for God’s peace and in a variety of ways. We are struggling to make our building accessible and to find the ways for a small congregation to grow and to continue ministry in this urban community. Very often we find ourselves digging deep for the resources to carry on the ministry to which we feel called, and very often we must make hard choices with our resources. It is exciting and challenging to be the Church in this place in this time.
In the midst of all of this, we must live as a community of prayer. My hope is that we will be able to draw together those who come in from the streets for care and assistance, those who come to worship, those who volunteer, area residents, area workers — people from all parts of the neighborhood to spend a few minutes together in Wednesday noon prayers. Prayer for the community, the concerns of those who gather, those who are ill or grieving, those who are without jobs. Prayers for the world, for the healing of our hurts and divisions. Prayers of thanksgiving for the goodness of God in our lives and prayers for the journey, the pilgrimage we are on.
I hope others will join me in noon prayer. We will be using The Divine Hours by Phyllis Tickle as a structure for our mid-day prayers, though we’ll adapt and add some music, and a wonderful resource of Everyday Psalms.