The following letter was written by Rev. Don Ashmall, Council Minister for the International Council of Community Churches. It was passed on to us by a PCG constituent and we enjoyed it so much, we wanted to share it with you. Happy Advent!
Grace and peace to you:
As we enter once again into the season of Advent, the world seems to many to be a lost and dangerous place. Violence reigns far and wide; anger and hatred are seen in every nation; there are too many hungry, too many without homes; too many without hope.
It was to just such a world that the good news of the Christ child and the promise of God’s shalom on earth were first proclaimed. Today we who are the community churches share the same message with our own time and place. Despair will not triumph; hope will reign victorious. Doubt and cynicism will not prevail; faith will make its way. Sorrow and suffering will not endure; in the eternal scheme of things joy has no ending.
None of this reduces or replaces the present travail in which our world finds itself. We know that in addition to proclaiming the gospel, we are called to serve those who hear it and model its transforming power. But as we seek to comfort the least of our sisters and brothers through acts of mercy, and as we afflict our too-comfortable siblings with the chastening proclamation of the prophets, we know that our labors are in harmony with the Maker of history and eternity. So we face this season and the coming year with confidence in the almighty God in whose name we are privileged to serve. May God bless you and your congregation in your ministry together.
Glory to God in the highest.
Rev. Don Ashmall
International Council of Community Churches