In a reading earlier this month, Mary and Martha told Jesus that "if you had been here, our brother would not have died." Moments later, Lazarus was raised from the dead by Jesus' presence.
As a congregation, we asked ourselves what a faith community looks like when Jesus is fully present in its midst. The responses were taken up with the offering, and a small selection compiled into a poem that was read out just before the end of the service. Another parishioner volunteered to type out each and every response to create the "word cloud" you see below.
Enjoy the image and the poem - and ask yourself, is Jesus fully present in your life right now? What old dreams or visions might he "bring back to life" for you?
They said: Lord, if you had been here,
Our brother would not have died.
It says it all, really, doesn’t it?
That wherever you are, Lord,
Death will never be the final answer.
Wherever you are, Lord,
We can be assured of new life.
Complex, ever-evolving life.
Life that may not look the same from one generation to the next.
But Life - everlasting.
Where there is a sense of purpose
Where there is great excitement
Where there is kindness and a glorious welcome, there is Jesus.
Where there is Jesus, there is hope.
Where people, young and old, are eager to hear his message
Where there is spiritual inspiration and learning
Where we are enlivened with grace and love, there is Jesus.
Where there is Jesus, there is renewal.
Where that energy and love push us out into the streets
Where we question our political leaders
Where we prioritize the poor, there is Jesus.
Where there is Jesus, there is rebirth.
Where we welcome believers
Where we welcome those searching for faith
Where we have faith that God is with us, always and forever, there is Jesus.
Dry bones shall rise up singing, Lord;
Where there is Jesus, there is life.
- St. Catherine’s congregation, April 6, 2014