by the Rev. Charlie Dupree
This past Sunday, we celebrated the fantastic young people who are a part of the fabric of St. Paul’s. We celebrated their contributions, as well as the contributions of their faithful teachers and mentors who are truly living into their baptismal promises “to do all in their power to support these persons in their life in Christ” (BCP, p. 303).
Peter Huff, a graduating senior, offered the reflection on Sunday. He was asked to talk about the impact that St. Paul’s has had on him. Having grown up at St. Paul’s and served as an acolyte, Peter spoke about the importance of ritual. Most people assert that ritual is lost on young people . . . that young people find ritual to be antiquated and irrelevant. Peter does not agree.
I realize that not all young people have the same opinion, but I have to agree with Peter that ritual gives young people – all of us – a sense of stability and purpose. Ritual, says Peter, isn’t about something that comes from us. Rather, he says, it moves through us, reminding us that we are human . . . that we are alive. Ritual is a grounding agent that keeps us from drifting into the shallow, murky waters of self-absorption. Somehow, God shows up as we participate in these ancient practices, reminding us that we’re not alone.
Maybe this is why of all the topics he could have chosen to put before us, Peter chose to lift up how St. Paul’s has introduced him to the spiritual value of ritual and underscored how it can prevent us from becoming adrift in a sea of distracting undertows and dangerous crosscurrents.
These are a few of my takeaways; what do you think? Take a look at Peter’s sermon by clicking here.
Congratulations to our young people who have completed another year in the world of academia. May God hold them, support them, and sustain them. And, may the community of St. Paul’s continue to support them as they move through the journeys of life.
See you in church, (Pentecost Sunday!)