Bishop Seage spends his weekends traveling across Mississippi, visiting big urban churches and tiny rural ones. As he zigzags about, he reminds us that all of us are connected in ministry, in relationship, and in mission.
As we speedily fly through the Great Fifty Days of Easter, seemingly faster each year, I'm putting in a new communion hymn on The Day of Pentecost from the contemplative Taize' Community. The community is an ecumenical monastic order in France, near Cluny, founded by a Swiss Protestant, who felt called to minister to young people and work towards greater cooperation among Christians.
Their worship and their songs were made to be accessible to the brothers and pilgrims, using mantras, short repeated phrases like antiphons. Usually a cantor provides the rest of the text of the psalm or Canticle. We have used "Ubi Caritas" for a while now. For Pentecost we will use "Veni Sancte Spiritus." Both were written by the late French organist Jacques Berthier, who composed much of their music. In the past fifteen years or so this invocation of the Holy Spirit has gradually replaced the "Veni Creator Spiritus" as the musical prayer at the laying on of hands at ordinations, so many of you have probably already heard it.
To prepare for Easter, we gather as a church family to tell one another the story that makes all the difference for our lives, the story to which we entrust our lives. Here's a quick reminder of all the unique ways we worship and live out that story during Holy Week.