Common Like Bread
Recently I have written about worship - about why we gather as a community of faith to pray together on Sunday mornings. What I have been trying to say is that being the church is essentially one fundamental act: turning what is ordinary into the extraordinary. At St. Alban's the "ordinary to extraordinary" elements of our worship include Sunday services where we give thanks and pray for ourselves and for the world but also include what we do when we are not at church; going to the grocery store and buying diapers for homeless infants or canned goods that we transform into casseroles So [that] Others May Eat; these actions are partners with our prayer and turn the ordinary into the extraordinary and become our worship - our Sacraments.
On the bulletin board above my desk at work there's a quote attributed to the Chilean poet and activist Pablo Neruda:
I stood by truth: to bring light to the land I tried to be common like bread, so when the struggle came she wouldn’t find me missing.
Neruda's hope was that from his place of privilege, perhaps, his life would remain common: Common like bread. Common like bread while buying diapers for homeless kids after or before buying lunch. Common like bread by making casseroles for the hungry in DC after shopping for dinner at Whole Foods. Common like bread by providing suitable shoes for the student at Harriet Tubman School who couldn't go on school field trips because he had none (thank you Jonell Easton and Tom Jansen).
By virtue of our faith the struggle has come. We thank God for this. And we thank the church. May each of us welcome the struggle and will to be found. And may we be common... like bread.