[About her participation in a Member Mission Leadership Institute, October 11-16, 2009.]
In our Catechism in the Book of Common Prayer, we are told that the ministers of the Church are “lay persons, bishops, priests, and deacons.” In other words, all of us are ministers! Through our baptism, we have been commissioned by Christ to become ministers. To be a minister means to be joined to Jesus in his missions and ministries. That means all of us are co-missioners with Christ, working with Jesus. to carry out his work of justice and love.
But how do we do that? Unfortunately, I think many of us are caught up in the idea that we only do this through our work with the church. And yet, how many hours of our lives are actually spent each week on church work? For many of us, 2-5 or even less. If that were the only mission work we were doing, we’d be pretty lame missionaries! But, in reality, that’s NOT the only mission work we are doing. In fact, we are already doing a lot of mission work for Christ.
At the recent Member Mission conference I attended, Wayne Schwab challenged us to think about our missions in our daily lives, to recognize that what we do as individuals from Monday-Saturday is the most important part of our mission and ministry as Christians. This is not revolutionary thinking — I think we all know it to be true — but the process of Member Mission gives some practical ways to think about how the church can better support ALL its members in their daily missions.
I will be sharing some of this information with you over the next few months. I plan to particularly do this with our existing Covenant Groups in the context of our Look, Book, Tooks, but others are encouraged to start thinking in this new way about the ministries and missions you are doing in the various areas of your life.
Meanwhile, I challenge all of you to think about one area of your life: your home life and your relationships with close friends and families. In what ways is your home life a mission for you? What are you already doing for God in this area? What else might God be calling you to do to share in Jesus’ mission of justice and love?
I’d, also, like to share one inspiring story of a member’s daily mission in this area, the mission of Eloise Guerrero. For years now Eloise has been supporting her mom and attending to her mom’s needs with love and dedication. As most of you know, her mom’s health has been declining recently, and Eloise has had to devote even more of her time to caring for her mom. What a wonderful witness Eloise is to us of the mission we can do in our own homes and family!
I know if we are intentional in reflecting on our daily missions, God will show us how to be much more effective in them. I look forward to sharing more with you and also to learning from YOU more about the mission work you are already doing, not just on Sundays, but from Monday – Saturday, each and every day of your lives.
— Mother Susan