Episcopal/Anglican users of Facebook may have noticed an event invitation for this upcoming Sunday: “Crash Your Local Episcopal Church: Pentecost.”
The event description reads:
The Holy Spirit is not a magical force we can conjure. We can’t keep it concentrated in a building. We can’t possibly limit its access to those who come to church or to those who are baptized. The Holy Spirit is already out there, wherever you go, everywhere in the world. Any time we say, “Come, Holy Spirit,” it’s ironic, because we’re beckoning Someone who cannot be beckoned, and who is always with us.
But if we didn’t beckon, would we notice? How often does a fish say, “Hey, I’m swimming in water!”? How often does a flame shout, “Aaaah! I’m on fire!”? How often do we stop whatever we’re doing, take a long, deep breath, and appreciate what it means to be alive?
If we did that all the time, people might well think we’d been drinking, even at nine in the morning. When people live life joyfully, wallowing in the Holy Spirit, amazing things start to happen. People reach out to others to give them what they need. The simplest actions can take on deep meaning and can break down barriers of language and social standing. The result is Resurrection on both a small and large scale.
Come join the movement this Sunday. Bring a friend, or four, or four thousand! Raise the roof! In the immortal words of gospel pop star Kirk Franklin, “We’re havin’ us a Holy Ghost party up in he-ah!”
Whether you’re Episcopalian or not, I think the invitation is a fine reminder of why we Christians (broadly speaking) gather from week to week. We come together to celebrate the power of the “Resurrection on both a small and large scale.” Amidst the challenges that we face in our separate churches — (un-)welcome changes in liturgy, threats to communion, attempts at building a more just church — we all rely on the power of God working Christ’s resurrection for us and in us through the power of the Holy Spirit, to renew the whole earth.
Of course, the FB invitation identifying the feast as a “Sports – Pep Rally” seems a bit off: pep rally I understand (and rather like) — but, sports? I suppose that if Paul could use athletic metaphors (see 1 Cor 9:24; 2 Tim 4:7), perhaps so can we.
So. . . what are you doing this Sunday? How are you celebrating the “Holy Ghost party?”