Tuesday, May 13, 2008

My Church Has a Neon Open Sign

Alivia once asked me what I thought the slogan should be for Freedom Friends Church. I suggested the poem on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty—give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, etc. The members and attenders really are an amazing group of misfits. We are not often eloquent, but we speak from our hearts and we really do mean well. I never thought I would find a church that I felt comfortable in, let alone one that I could love, but there it is, down in Salem.

I love opening with music, even though we don't always listen to the tempo or sing quite in key. I love that people express their gratitudes and petitions so freely. I think most Friends would consider our silent worship the worst kind of popcorn meeting, but I am so grateful that folks at Freedom Friends share messages even when they do not know why they feel they should, or exactly where they are going when they start to speak. We are all learning together and everyone has something to contribute.

After being away for so long, it was really a surprise to see the room filling up on Sunday. Most of the faces were familiar and some of them were new, but it was just incredible how many people were there. Our community has musicians and teachers, students and ministers, lawyers and artists, and lots of people who are just looking for somewhere to belong. It is a family and like any family we get on each other's nerves and say the wrong thing more often than not, but we honestly care about each other and try to help when we can.

I am pretty sure that I have the record for worst attendance by a member, but I'm always glad to be there when I get the chance. Stop by sometime if you're in town. I probably won't be there, but I know you'll be welcome.

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