STEWARDSHIP PASTORAL MESSAGE 2023
Giving Thanks : Eucharistic Stewardship
The Eucharist, from my perspective on the opposite side of the chalice, has been nothing short of witnessing God’s grace in the form of miracles among the flesh. I can vividly recall a flame arising from the spoon of a parishioner receiving communion. It is hard to imagine, but this flame, harmlessly, illuminated around the face of this individual, showing me God was present in this moment. Similarly, while visiting a parishioner during a time they were in a comatose state, I questioned whether to administer Holy Communion because of their condition. However, once I presented the blood and body of Christ, this parishioner reached for the mandili (cloth napkin) to assist me in administering her the holy sacrament, received Holy Communion and returned to her comatose state.
The Eucharist is experiential. Our gathering to receive during the Divine Liturgy, is our expression of thanksgiving for God‘s precious gift of His Son. Our thanksgiving is a humble appreciation for all the gifts our Lord has granted to us. As I stated in my most recent sermon, we never regret attending church; our hearts are lifted and quenched after attending services and receiving Holy Communion.
As we approach 2023, consider the words in scripture, “Thine own of Thine own we offer to Thee….” To that end, I would ask you to prayerfully consider, “How can I thank God for my many blessings?” Just as Jesus says, “freely you have received, freely give”, I believe your commitment can follow those words in how you can impact St. Luke and in all our ministries.
Amy, thank you for your consideration. Before completing the enclosed Stewardship Card, please consider the commitment you are making. A check mailed to the Church, or an online donation is most meaningful when accompanied by your presence, by your willingness to serve, by your prayers, and by your commitment. Giving is not a substitute for commitment – it is an expression of your commitment and an expression of thanks for the many blessings in your life.
With pastoral blessings and brotherly love,
Rev. Father Christ Kontos, Protopresbyter