Today I went to church for the first time in ages. I have been getting ready for Advent with the choir, but somehow I haven’t been able to get my body out of the house on time for a very long time. This is even worse when you figure that my service starts at either 10:30 am or 11:30 am.
The lovely thing about making it to church this morning is mostly about the sense of community that I have in this church. These people are part of my community in Vancouver. They greet me with hugs and smiles and cheers of welcome back. How are things going with you? They don’t make me feel bad for not being there much over the last year, but welcomed back into the fold. It makes me want to be there more.
Community. This is what church is for a lot of people. God working through people to create a sense of communion. These are people who would not be friends, or acquaintances if it weren’t for this communion. These are people that generally wouldn’t meet in the other parts of their lives. Like blogs and twitter now, church was, and still is to some extent, how people of all ages, different backgrounds, lifestyles and financial situations and education come together.
No matter what the religion, be it Islam, Judaism, Christianity or whatever, the sense of community is the biggest gift it affords. Well at least in my humble opinion.
I don’t know anyone of any religion who doesn’t have at least some difference of opinion with the doctrine. Sometimes these are large enough that it stops you from becoming part of a religious community. Sometimes if you can put the politics out of the way then it can become a place of comfort.
I believe in God, and I am certain that God isn’t nearly as judgemental as the people who purport to know what he is thinking. I don’t think that a God who hates people who love each other is a God for me. So maybe I am just as deluded as the next person, but my God is one of mercy and well, if he made all people, he made them the way they are. ALL people. ALL sexual orientations. ALL.