The work of the Peace Post, hosted by the Episcopal Peace Fellowship, is grounded in two very basic Christian beliefs: that God has promised to redeem all of creation (see Romans), and that communities of faithful people are called and empowered by the Spirit to take part in that redemptive work. A well-known rabbinic way of naming the goal of this work is “the healing of the world,” and many Christians now write of the struggle for “restorative justice.” While phrases differ and means vary widely, the vision is clear: that God’s will be done “on earth as it is in heaven.”
When we sit together to write letters to our elected officials regarding issues of public justice on which we’ve reflected as Christians, we are acting as part of the community which we call the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration to contribute a very small bit to the world’s healing. And the “community” part is critical: Jesus lived and served as part of a community, Paul spent his life (and wrote his letters) to communities (see Romans 12), the Holy Spirit gifts and empowers communities to serve the world in Jesus’s name (see I Cor 12).
Money is a necessary component of this kingdom work. When my wife and I pledge and give, we don’t really see it as giving to God (after all, what could God possibly need?) but to the work to which God has called this parish, this community of faithful people. If we felt that Transfiguration was not engaged in that work, I expect we would not be supporting it financially – but we do witness that work being done here, and in our small ways, participate in it.
On the Sunday when I write this, Fr. Casey has preached on Matthew 11, where Jesus invites us to be “yoked” together with him, because (he asserts) his yoke is “easy,” his burden “light.” In my own experience, I discover the ease and lightness and joy of that yoke through and with my brothers and sisters in Christ, in engaging together in God’s work of healing the world, in acting together as the hands and feet and body of Christ which we are. In that way, I also am (part of) Transfiguration.