Devotions on our Proposed Mission Statement
By Jenny Adams
As I was contemplating our proposed new mission statement I decided to break it down, look up definitions of each word, and see if I could find something on the ELCA website that would support it. I was pleased to find not only validation for each section of the statement but also explanations that enhanced my understanding of it. I have provided the definitions and the corresponding support below. Each definition is from Google dictionary and the corresponding paragraphs are from the ELCA website.
Proclaim – announce officially or publicly; declare something one considers important with due emphasis
Boldly – in a confident and courageous way; showing a willingness to take risks
“PROCLAIM the Good News of God In Christ – As the Church, acting together and as individuals, we have a story to tell. We have the story of God’s movement in our lives through the saving actions of Jesus Christ. The life, death and resurrection of Jesus is not simply a story in the Bible. Rather it’s the story of our lives and the story of what brings us life. We simply share with others how God is working in our lives. We share the story that shapes our story.”
Serve – perform duties or services for (another person or an organization); be of service to; be of use to; help Joyfully – with great pleasure and happiness
“SERVE All People Following The Example of Jesus – To follow the example of Jesus and serve all people requires us to get involved in the lives of others. Jesus valued relationships. Jesus’ conversation with the Samaritan woman, making time for children or comforting his friends Martha and Mary serves as a blueprint for moving us beyond projects and anonymous charitable activities to relationships.
Worship – show reverence and adoration for (a deity); honor with religious rites; take part in a religious ceremony
Faithfully – in a loyal manner
“WORSHIP – A foundation of faith for everything we do – worship stands at the center of our life of faith. Through God’s word, water, bread and prayer we are nurtured in faith and sent out into the world. Connected with and central to everything we do, worship unites us in celebration, engages us in thoughtful dialogue and helps us grow in faith.”
Welcome – greet (someone arriving) in a glad, polite, or friendly way; show hospitality to
Openly – without concealment, deception, or prevarication, especially where these might be expected; frankly or honestly; truly; sincerely; without constraint
“WELCOME – As Christ’s church, we value the richness of God’s creation and offer a radical welcome to all people, appreciating our common humanity and our differences. We are a church that does not view diversity as a barrier to unity. We recognize and will challenge dynamics of power and privilege that create barriers to participation and equity in this church and society – for women, people of color, minority ethnic groups, people with disabilities, people who are marginalized or living in poverty, and the LGBTQ community.”
I am continually grateful for our Messiah family and I am excited to see what this year brings to our community. Let us proclaim, serve, worship, and welcome together, asking God to provide us with love and understanding for all.
Each definition is from Google dictionary (google.com) and the corresponding paragraphs are from the ELCA website (ELCA.org).
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