I just spent the day in “church”, not the kind with walls and steeples and pews and pulpits, but the kind where the walls have been torn down and the Holy Spirit speaks not through the ordained but the delivered. From Yolanda’s gift of dance and message of surrender, to Mildred’s worship through her gift of song. I saw God move. I saw God in the face of the little child who allowed me to carry her through the fellowship, trusting me a stranger. I saw God move as people build new friendships across race, class and religious back ground. I saw God full-filling the vision of Embrace that has consistently guided us for the past five years. That vision “A city united to embrace all; bridging people of every race, class, and religious background together to care for one another.”
Stephanie Rice is our newest AmeriCorps member captured beautifully the spirit of both the Fairfeild community event in her post One Word: Hope – Fairfield Court Fellowship Event and the Hillside event in her post It Takes a Villiage – Hillside Court Fellowship event which are posted over on the Embrace Richmond website.
I shared over on the Embrace Richmond site that our Board of Directors just approved a change in our mission statement in a post titled Our Mission Revisited: Outcome of our Strategic Planning Process. Our new missions statement “To strengthen impoverished communities by empowering community-based leaders and engaging people of faith in works of service.” more fully captures the heart beat of embrace which is relational ministry that grows out of a shared mission of empowering communities.
Today was a beautiful picture of what true community empowerment looks like. I encourage you to check out these recent posts on the Embrace Richmond website and to pray for our community based leaders. They hold the key to unlocking the full potential of their communities.