“Bearing Witness”

The Feast of the Ascenscion

Mk. 16:15-20

I attended church this morning at Howard Thurmand’s old church to here Obama’s old pastor, Jeremy Wrigtht, from Chicago. He gave and excellent sermon. I can understand why the president basically dumped him–he spoke  the truth to power.  Excellent sermon and service. Spent afternoon working on newsletter. Have been doing outreach.  People are so needy, a pair of socks, some food, some needles, they need them, and they are gracious in asking.  Again I see the pained face of Jesus in our midst.  And as I was walking I was thinking of this scripture from Mark, on the Feast of the Ascension.  Jesus tells the disciples to “Go out to the whole world and proclaim the Good News,. . .”  we are called to bear witness–in what we say, and in how we act, without judgment, and with a presence of love.  It is in bearing witness and bearing the burdens of people that we know Christ, not in the judgmental love we so often give and hear about. I can remember a number of years a go a young man cutting his testicles off, calling me from a fundamentalist church to come and get him and take him to the hospital, and I asked one of their pastors to do it more quickly and was told: “He must first repent and turn to the Lord.” I went and got him and took him.  Without mentioning Jesus once Jesus loved him more in those moments then all that damn preaching.  Jesus has ascended, and his ascension means that at Pentecost he will come and dwell within us and we are to proclaim the Gospel–and as Frances stated: “with as few as words as possible.”  I am getting ready to close out my night by celebrating the Eucharist–in the bread and wine, Jesus comes, and is present. Deo Gratis! Thanks be to God!

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