If you give a Visitor to our church a cup,
they’ll want coffee to go with it.
They will visit the fellowship hall to fill the cup..
..and discover that Jesus has set up a fun group. There are snacks and friends.
They will grab a plate and look for a place to donate a dollar or so.
When they find the collection plate
they will notice the sign up sheet for future weeks.
Once they sign that list,
they’ll notice the volunteer opportunities and sign a few of those too. They might get carried away by the Holy spirit and spend a few minutes reading about the ministry of being a supportive Eucharistic Community. They may think of new ways to serve as well!
When they finish signing up,
they’ll return the pen and sit down to chat.
As they chat they will hear about an interesting discussion at Sunday School,
so they will ask questions about what we believe about God and about the class.When they learn the class is a good one they’ll decide to join in next week.
When the next week arrives, they’ll arrive early to find the Sunday School teacher and ask what they need to do. The Sunday School teacher will invite them to come as they are. She or He will fix a little packet for they so they won’t feel lost.
They’ll settle in, listen until they are comfortable engaging as well. They may even pick up a Bible and begin to read a few passages. They’ll begin to experience God for themselves.
They’ll probably ask about the passages we read each Sunday. When the class provides some context about liturgy, they’ll ask to see the Book of Common Prayer. When they look at the prayer book they’ll get excited and want to use one of their own to help develop their Christian life. They’ll ask about being a lay reader.
They’ll start to serve Him. When they’ve served for a while, they’ll want to be full members of His Church. They’ll ask for a confirmation class.
Once confirmed they’ll want to have communion “as oft as they are able”.
Confirmation and communion complete they’ll sit back and look at His church, the community which they’ve joined. This will remind them of the joys of fellowship they first observed. So..
they’ll head to the fellowship hall after service for some fellowship with snacks and coffee.
And chances are to get that coffee…
they’re going to need a cup to pour it in.
(Based on the Book If you Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff. All images are from the St. John’s Episcopal Church Website and Facebook Page and depict actual events within our Eucharistic Community)
Although we quip about our coffee habits as Episcopalians, they serve a purpose in fellowship, community and outreach.
PSALM 23:5. “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.” [NIV]