Friday, April 18, 2008
I have been overwhelmed by warmth and light in the midst of the cold. There is still snow and cold here in April and yet the sun is up early and sets late. And people are generous and welcoming and making room for visitors with incredible warmth. They have shared their lives with me and I am so grateful for their witness.
Yesterday, I was privileged to meet the mother of one of the Interior Deanery clergy. I had been here when he was ordained in 2000, and now I was able to meet with his Mom, Hannah, and bring her communion. She is hard of hearing and going blind, but at 99 her spirit is unflagging. Her son, the priest, is the eldest of fourteen. She told me the story of giving birth, how her mother had cared for her and tied the cord off with the lace of her moccasin. Her life was full, full of challenges and hard work.Her sons now care for her, as she cared for them.
"Love one another, as I have loved you" takes on a rich meaning in the presence of Hannah, Mardu and the others who have welcomed me here. Love demands a labor, a commitment, a willing heart ready to put a shoulder in to the work, the care, the providing for others. And yet, they so freely and willingly offer that kind of love and welcome.
May we today, offer that kind of welcome to the stranger, to those who journey in our midst. I pray I have the strength to lend a hand, to offer what I have where ever I am. For that is God's love made visible in our lives. Hearts willing to break open in welcome, hands willing to offer what we have, and bodies ready to go to the aid of others.