May 21, 2022
Dear PJ's Community,
This week we celebrate completions and beginnings. Sunday, we recognize the completion of degrees by students at university and graduate school. Monday leads to new beginnings.
St PJs is blessed by having many students worship in our space. They bring energy, ideas, technical skills, thoughtful sermons, and often very beautiful voices. Each student has been on a journey of hard work, late nights, deadlines, exams, and seemingly endless papers. That has now come to an end, at least for a short time until they enter their new beginnings.
I am struck by the Lesson this week from Acts (16:9-15). In a vision, Paul was told to travel with his followers to Macedonia to proclaim the good news. The writer describes the journey: sailing from Troas to Samothrace, then to Neapolis and finally, overland to Philippi, where they ‘remained… for some days’. Since there probably was not a synagogue in Philippi, they went to the river to speak to some of the women who had gathered for prayer. One, named Lydia ‘opened her heart to listen eagerly to what was said by Paul.’
They didn’t meet a huge throng of people. They didn’t convert hundreds. They made a journey, based on a vision, to find one woman who opened her heart to God, and, with her household, was baptized.
New beginnings do not need to be full of large or exciting events and accomplishments. The journey starts with the people you meet, the respect and love you give, the relationships you form. And, over time, little by little, something wonderful can build.
For each of us on our journey, whether it is new or old, Jesus reassures that the Holy Spirit will help to guide us. ‘I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace, I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid’ (John 14:25-27).
PJs Wardens and Vestry