What We Leave at the Altar

On the first Sunday of each month, we at Grace United Methodist Church embark on a pilgrimage. We go to the Upper Room, to the table prepared by a carpenter's son. We come. We kneel. We receive. We eat. We pray, We rise. We return.

Within this journey is another action verb that is easily missed by the observer. Sometimes the action occurs between kneeling and receiving. At other times, it happens between the praying and the rising. This is the moment when we give. As we put hands on the chancel rail, from our fingers slip pieces of paper--dollar bills and personal checks. When we rise and return to our seats, the money does not go back with us. Each month, these gifts go towards a mission or charity. Some of these missions are United Methodist. Others are unique to the Miss-Lou.

This upcoming Sunday, all the slips of green left on the rail will go four miles down the road.

Pastor Steve Pearson has been a visible figure in Natchez for the past 25 years. As the pastor of Community Chapel, he has not only served his congregation but also his larger community. As he has cared for others, we now have the opportunity to care for him. Over a year ago, Steve was diagnosed with colon cancer and was successfully treated. Recently, the cancer has appeared in his liver. He is undergoing extensive chemotherapy and faces future surgeries. The medical bills are high, and area churches have been invited to contribute to Steve's healthcare costs.

At the Lord's table, we are in awe as Christ gives himself to us. Let us give in return by helping a brother in need.

In journey with you to the Lord's feast,
Pastor Darian