Since two communities—English- and Spanish-speaking—have begun to find a path together in my church, one thing has become abundantly clear: I am going to be going to a lot more parties. Our Spanish-speaking community has parties for everything, and everything is a party.
Regular churchgoing does not make you a friend of death. But if you sit in the pews long enough, you cannot help getting acquainted.
I once went on a blind date. He was a law student, a friend of a friend, and I was a seminarian. We met for drinks. He was nice, funny. He was a self-identifying Christian--the first one, actually, I had ever gone out with. We were talking about our chosen professions; he was, as many are, fascinated by the idea of a call to ministry. My call story is not exactly dramatic, but it has a social justice edge, forged on youth group mission trips and in researching poverty. “I want to make the world a better place,” I told the date. The future lawyer looked at me and asked, “But isn’t the world a fallen place?”
The church is not an ark floating on the top of the waters. It lives and breathes within the waters.