Building Gracious Space in the PCUSA: Shared Service

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A) continues to engage in discussion and debate over marriage amendment 14F, seeking ways to common ground and gracious space. Might we already have a viable way forward? My volunteer work with other Presbyterians in New Orleans under the auspices of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance showed me how shared service can bring our church closer together, even when we disagree.

In New Orleans, we brought down walls between one another other as we put up walls for those in need. In my reflection for More Light Presbyterians, I offer my hope that the spirit of shared service might carry us forward. Below is an excerpt from the piece:

When we gathered in the morning for prayer and directions from our site leader for the day, what mattered was your skill in carpentry or strength of back or willingness to learn and follow orders. It didn’t matter that I am a bisexual person or that my partner assigned to measure and cut dry wall with me is certain that Romans 1:26-27 settles any questions about God’s judgment of LGBT people. We could build common ground by building houses.

I encourage you to read the full post on MLP’s website and offer your thoughts there or in the comments below. Do you see service as a way forward? Where else have you seen opportunities to bridge the divides between your own church?

While you are at it, you can view my other posts in the Building Gracious Space Series:

Getting to Wonder

Building Trust Through Kindness



Shared Feelings

Photo Credit: La Shola y EL Gringo? via Compfight cc

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