Church Directory

Church Directory November 27, 2006

“All we need is a letter from the pastor.”

That’s what the organizers of the Church Directory tell me.

But I don’t want to write a letter, because I know . . . I can tell from hanging around the church office . . . that whatever goes in the church directory stands in posterity for years and years.


And years.

20, I believe, since the last time we did a picture directory. (To be fair I went back and checked. In reality it has only been 15 years.) Still . . .

The pressure!

I’m gazing over the beautiful job church member Amy Dale has done in organizing our new directory and trying to think what words I could put to such wonderful images. And I know I will come up with something.

In the meantime, the words of Ann Weems (brought to my attention by my mother-in-law, Virginia Butler) seem to fit the bill:

The church of Jesus Christ is where a child of God brings a balloon . . .
is where old women come to dance . . .
is where young men see visions and old men dream dreams.

The church of Jesus Christ is where lepers come to be touched . . .
is where the blind see and the deaf hear . . .
is where the lame run and the dying live.

The church of Jesus Christ is where daisies bloom out of barren land . . .
is where children lead and wise men follow . . .
is where mountains are moved and walls come tumbling down.

The church of Jesus Christ is where loaves of bread are stacked in the sanctuary to feed the hungry . . .
is where coats are taken off and put on the backs of the naked . . .
is where shackles are discarded and kings and shepherds sit down to life together.

The church of Jesus Christ is where barefoot children run giggling in procession . . .
is where the minister is ministered unto . . .
is where the anthem is the laughter of the congregation and the offering plates are full of people.

The church of Jesus Christ is where people go when they skin their knees or their hearts . . .
is where frogs become princes and Cinderella dances beyond midnight . . .
is where judges don’t judge and each child of God is beautiful and precious.

The church of Jesus Christ is where the sea divides for the exiles . . .
is where the ark floats and the lamb lies down with the lion . . .
is where people can disagree and hold hands at the same time.

The church of Jesus Christ is where night is day . . .
is where trumpets and drums and tambourines declare God’s goodness . . .
is where lost lambs are found.

The church of Jesus Christ is where people write thank-you notes to God . . .
is where work is a holiday . . .
is where seeds are scattered and miracles grown.

The church of Jesus Christ is where home is . . .
is where heaven is . . .
is where a picnic is communion and people break bread together on their knees.

The church of Jesus Christ is where we live responsively to God’s coming . . .
even on Monday morning the world will hear . . .
an abundance of alleluias!

Amen.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Tripp Hudgins

    Amy Dale is the bomb. We know this in Chicago.

  • Teri

    can you not just put THAT in the directory? There must be some way to get publishing permission. just saying…it seems like that might be less stressful than writing something during Advent!

  • Jim

    Amy:

    I love this. I’m going to use it as a devotional before my church visioning meeting this Saturday.

    Blessings.

  • A. Lin

    Use what you’ve posted here if you can. I guarantee that it will be better and live on into obscurity better than any letter you compose (not that a letter from you wouldn’t be good–I just know that I wouldn’t want to write one for a church directory either). ;)

  • ppolarbear

    what a cool poem.