Monday, May 6, 2013

Looking Forward to May 12, 2013 -- 7th Sunday of Easter

The Scripture Readings this week are:
  • Revelation 22:12-21
  • John 17:20-26
The Sermon title is: Ut Omnes Unum Sint, Akwe Nia’Tetewá:neren

Early Thoughts:  What do those words mean?  The Latin is "That All May be One".  The Mohawk is "All My Relations".  They are included on the crest of the United Church of Canada and come from the Gospel reading for this week.  Jesus prayer for his followers, prayed just before his arrest, trial, and execution, is that:
The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.(verses 22-23)

Back in time, this sentiment was included on the crest because there was a dream that the events of 1925 were a precursor to a series of unions that would created one united Protestant church in Canada.  A wonderful dream.  Not all that likely to become a fact sometimes it seems that rather than May Be One we should be saying Maybe One?...

So what do those words mean for us today?  When the Mohawk was added to the crest last year (Mohawk was chosen because the Mohawk were the nation that the first Methodist missionaries worked with) it was noted that although the English translation was different, the 'sense' of "All My Relations" was the same as the 'sense' of "That All May Be One".  So how do we tie that 'sense' to our lives as people of faith?

As usual with such things, I am sure there is more than one "right" answer.  But at the same time the answers are related.  It is my firm belief that the "right" answers all have to do (as does so much of living as a person of Christian faith) with how we treat each other.  They have to do with respect, with caring, with seeing them not as the other but as one of us, with the importance of focusing on what links us instead of what keeps us apart.  How does it change our attitudes and behaviour to take these phrases to heart?  How does it effect the choices we make towards the people who sleep on our doorsteps, the ones who cut us off in traffic, the ones who teach our children, the ones we elect to government?

How do we live lives that show how we care for "all our relations"?  Do we share Jesus'' prayer that "all may be one"?

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