Yesterday we had a Pentecost celebration at church, including a birthday cake for this annual celebration of the birthday of the church. The children ran around the church at the beginning of the service in red, orange and yellow tunics waving wands with ribbons of the same colors attached. They were the tongues of flame that appeared in the midst of our worship. Two neighborhood young people who have been attending our church since their older brother was drawn by the basketball goal were baptized yesterday. Their home life is more challenging than that of most of the kids in our congregation, and as evidence of that their mother did not show up for the baptism. Seeing this, a young woman with kids the same age, who has worked with these two young ones in VBS and Sunday school, stepped up beside them, as did her husband. Tears welled as I witnessed this visible confirmation of the vows the congregation took at this baptism, to be family to these young people and watch over them. So now they are our kids too, baptized with water and the fire of the Holy Spirit, into the family of faith. I hope we will be able to bless them as much as they have already blessed us by their presence.
Grace and Peace,