This Sunday afternoon at 4:00, families and church members will gather in the worship center for a service of confirmation. Fifty-plus young people, well-dressed and well-coiffed, will take their places in the rows. We will move through a worship service with singing, praying, preaching, and fidgeting, and questions will be asked and answered. Then, at last, hands will be placed upon heads and the words of confirmation spoken. Then we will rejoice, take pictures, and go out to celebrate with family and friends. That’s what will happen.
And this is what will happen:
This Sunday afternoon, the seventh of May in the year of our Lord 2017,
fifty-plus young people will gather in the prayers and love of family and church,
and a portal in the space-time continuum will be opened,
and through that portal all of the saints of all of the ages will move and gather around those 50-plus confirmands,
and the songs we sing will echo through the millennia,
and the Holy Spirit that stirred the ancient waters and birthed the church and even now moves where it will, will complete the prayers we cannot find words to finish,
and the words of Paul’s Letter to the Romans will be read to the gathered church, just as they were read for those gathered Romans almost 2000 years ago,
and a very human preacher, joining a great long line of very human preachers, will interpret Paul’s words,
and there will be fidgeting as there was in that gathered church in Rome,
and questions will be asked that define our essentials,
and the hosts of heaven will rejoice as those 50-plus confirmands profess their faith,
and the apostles of old will stand with the clergy of HMUMC,
and with them we will lay our hands on heads,
and the church will join these sixth-grade saints to all of the prophets and priests and holy fools of all the ages.
Then we will rejoice, take pictures, and go out to celebrate with family and friends.
I hope you will pray for the saints we call sixth-graders. I hope you will pray for the church they are joining. It is the Body of Christ. It is God’s holy people, called to move with grace and love generation to generation, individual to individual. The church is the great movement of the Spirit across the millennia. And right now, right here, it is us.