|Altar at Bath Abbey|
This morning we celebrate both Christ the King Sunday and Thanksgiving Sunday. We are also bringing in the harvest of our stewardship conversation. During the offering you will have the opportunity to share your estimate of giving cards so that we might celebrate the commitment that we are making as a community to support the ministry of this church.
Christ the King Sunday brings to a close the liturgical year that began on the First Sunday of Advent. The liturgical year begins with a word of hope and anticipation. We move through the year lifting up stories of how God is present with us in Christ and through the Spirit. On this day we celebrate the coming of Christ’s reign in its fullness on earth as in heaven. We will continue repeating the cycle until the Day of the Lord comes.
This Thursday has been set aside by presidential decree as a day to give thanks for the abundance given to us. Although Thursday has become synonymous with turkey, football, and now shopping, we will have two opportunities this week to join with others in the community to offer thanksgiving for the blessings that have come to us. You can join me this evening at Big Beaver United Methodist Church for the annual Troy-area Interfaith Group celebration. Then on Tuesday we will be hosting the Troy Clergy Group Thanksgiving Service, which will feature a joint choir. Both services will help us focus on the call to give thanks. As the Psalmist declares:
Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him, bless his name.
For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations. (Psalm 100:4-5).
The theme of our stewardship season has been “From Bread and Wine to Faith and Giving.” In each of the sermons I have been trying to connect the call to stewardship with the call to the Table. One of the ways in which we name what happens at the Table is the word Eucharist, which comes from the Greek word that means “to give thanks.”