Minister’s February Message 2016
February 28, 2016
One of my favourite books is ‘Pillars of the Earth’ written by Ken Follet. The story is set in the middle of 12th century England. Set against historical events, the book explores the development of the medieval architecture and building work which produced the great European Cathedrals. Ken Follet writes about the architects and builders taking a lifetime to build the Cathedrals without the technology we take for granted today. Most of the architects and builders didn’t live to see their buildings completed but many future generations, including ours, have benefited from a legacy which has stood the test of time.
Those 12th century people built on a legacy which began on the first Easter evening when frightened disciples hid in a locked room following the unimaginable death and resurrection of Jesus. Every one of those disciples had let Jesus down in some way, yet the risen Jesus still came back to ask his friends to continue the church He had started building. In Acts 2, we get a wonderful glimpse of this church in its earliest days where people are united, everyone is attentive to the disciple’s teachings, there are enough volunteers for every task, people are giving generously to support the church, and people are lining up to join. If you know your Bible and the story of the church, though, you know this does not last. Soon the church was dealing with all sorts of difficulties. Despite this Jesus’ church legacy continued to grow and change many people’s lives.
For 132 years, Greenbank Parish Church has been trying to pass on this legacy. Of course, we could be doing so much more and that’s why we are currently trying to determine what our legacy might be in this place and time. Architects have been appointed to look at whether the creation of suitable space and the establishing of a secure financial future might be found in the better use of our land and buildings. Kirk Session appointed groups are also considering Greenbank’s engagement with young people, the growing disengagement of those under the age of 50 and how any identified needs within the community and beyond might be best served by this church. Every member of the congregation will have an opportunity to get involved in the discussions about these issues in the months to come.
It is now our turn to build on the legacy which began on the first Easter evening. This is not just a corporate challenge for Greenbank church – as those who have gone before us – we are all individually challenged by our faith in the Risen Jesus, to choose what legacy of faith we want to leave behind for future generations.
May God guide our church and each one of us, to both receive and offer legacies that may stand the test of time.
I wish you a blessed Easter.
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