For the past two Sundays, many attended the after-worship Church 101 sessions led by Pastor Lacey. These coincided with the two weeks we spent exploring the book of Hebrews in worship, and wondering together about our faith. What is faith, where do we get it, why do we lose it, how do we regain it? This time has felt a little like Lent – a pause to deepen our beliefs and regain our balance. It’s been a gift to us in the middle of otherwise hot summer days and ordinary time.
This past Sunday the Church 101 session was especially beautiful and participatory. Each person introduced themselves and shared what it means to them to belong or to be a member. We explored some of the membership practices of different denominations. We examined the UCC Statement of Faith and the UCC membership covenant. We also shared CUCC membership practices and experiences.
Here are many of the responses to the question “What does membership mean to you?”:
we care for one another
there is a desire to contribute
each has a responsibility to the group
each has made a commitment
we enjoy privileges
we can experience it like family
there is a likemindedness
it requires active participation
it involves fellowship
we help each other through transition
there is trustworthiness
seeking to learn more
expressing gifts and joy/contentment/bliss
it involves covenant
being part of something larger than yourself
there’s a shared communal focus
it means attending to what’s happening
it includes a covenant to facilitate growth and change
Can membership mean all these things? And more? What does church membership and belonging mean to you?
If you or someone you know might be interested in exploring membership at a church that encourages and engages in such conversations, contact Pastor Lacey (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Associate Pastor Śānti (email@example.com).