Saturday, January 3, 2009

G.I.F.T. Mission

I would like to discuss the G.I.F.T mission. I was not present in the beginning so missed any discussion at that time. Even so, it never hurts to review the mission from time to time. Ever since the church started talk of the vision for mission a few years ago, I have been thinking of what I want from church, which is a long term path of spiritual growth. Ever since Pastor Carol came, I tried to take advantage of her bible study classes. Over time it seemed to me that I could not just go to church, adult education sessions and bible studies to grow. All of those things are great building blocks, but it takes something else to turn it all into a better person.

I would like to explore several ways to Grow In Faith. First is to enumerate the ways. I can think of a few: (1) Relationship with God (prayer, meditation), (2) Relationship with self, (3) Relationship with spouse, (4) relationship with family. This list goes on to include friends, relatives, neighbors, strangers and ends with enemies. The list of things to deal with includes attitude and actions, words and deeds.

Let me suggest just one topic, as a result of the big news of the times. What is the proper Christian response to bad economic times? Our church revenue is declining, some of us are becoming unemployed and those of us who are self-employed may experience declining incomes. I suggest that the proper Christian response is to give more. The Old Testament calls for the ancient Jews to give 10% of their income to support the clergy. In our modern economy we can probably support 'our' clergy with less than 10%. We are also called to feed the hungry, cloth the naked and take care of the widows and orphans. However how much money does it take to support mission? The number 1 goal of our church is mission. How do we know that we are doing 'enough'? Can we do more? Just some questions for discussion.

I would like to fill out this discussion with more general topics and then start filling in some details and gather sentiments of interest from the group.

1 comment:

  1. Frigg and I have decided that our goal this year is to dedicate an extra ($secret) per month to donate to a predominately local charity as our response to the current economic situation. I may change the locality some time as it occurs to me that Rochester is probably not as hard hit as some other places. This may change on Tuesday, if the rummers are true about a big layoff at a local large employer. I figure the basics are food, clothing and shelter. I looked up homeless shelters in Rochester and I only found 3: largest is the Dorothy Day house, then the Interfaith Hospitality Network and then the Salvation Army. Will try to give to each one this year. Will start with Dorothy Day.