Have you ever taught a child to fold their fingers inside their hands and say the rhyme, “here is the church, here is the steeple, open the doors and see all the people?” The wiggling fingers teach children, and adults, too, that the church is not the building — the steeples, windows, or structure, but people gathering to worship God.
There’s something else in the children’s rhyme. As the child breaks open their hands to reveal the people,” they move their fingers back and forth, often as fast as they can. This simple move reminds us that the church is the energy and actions that share the love of Christ.
- When a disaster strikes, people give, volunteer, and pray so that those impacted receive help and hope, this is church.
- When poverty and violence cause hunger and people join together to respond to the need and address its root causes, this is church.
- When injustice falls on those who are vulnerable and people join hands with one another and lift their voices against the interests of power, this is church.
The church is the Holy Spirit’s transforming power emanating into the world sharing the compassion, justice, love, and peace of Christ. Presbyterians join the movement of the Spirit into every corner of the Earth — and in this season, through our church-wide One Great Hour of Sharing.
- We share— and church happens with women who were once trafficked for domestic labor and now own their own cooperative business.
- We share— and church happens with people through land rights training and improvements to farming methods.
- We share— and church happens with those whose homes have been washed away by flood, as the arms of comfort wrap around them, and hands pick up shovels to assist.
The church is happening right now, all around us — because we share Christ’s love.
Let us pray:
God of Compassion, move your church into the world with imagination and love. May the gifts we give and the kindness we offer be shared with the most vulnerable of your children. Amen.
This Minute for Mission is available to download/ print for your convenience (presbyterianmission.org/oghs/resources)