This past weekend we had our first Summer Faith Pilgrimage trip with our youth group. I was suprised that we had twelve kids plus parents meet at the church building at 8 AM to drive down to our local Episcopal church for the early service. It was great. You could tell that our kids were very interested. They responded well, and caught on to the general flow of the service. They seemed to appreciate it. After the service they were loving the stained glass windows. That's interesting, considering the movement several years ago to remove all religious images from churches to not bother young people and the unchurched. Anyways, after the service Father Jack, who used to work with youth primarily, visited with us and answered questions.
When we got back to our building we discussed the similarities/differences and what was most meaningful to us. We especially appreciated communion at the altar. Our church takes communion every sunday (in the Church of Christ tradition) but it seemed like the whole set up of the Holy Communion at St. Mary's was a bigger deal.
This sunday we are going to be visiting a couple of churches in Memphis: Greater Imani Church and Christian Center and Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. We'll be at the early (8 AM) service at Greater Imani and then at the 10 AM Divine Liturgy at Annunciation. Then on to Huey's for lunch. Our kids are really excited about this trip, since it is the most varied of our church experiences. A large, predominantly black charismatic church followed by a hasn't-changed-in-roughly-1800-years orthodox church. It should give us a good "big picture" of God's church.
Blessings on my readers.