The Gospel on Sunday July 14 was the well-known story of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10 which Jesus uses to answer the question, “Who is my neighbor?” Rev. Dr. Elizabeth explained that the Priest and Levite (who passed by the traveler who had been beaten and left in a ditch) were traditional Judeans who could not touch an unclean person and so were caught between a moral duty and their duty to follow the rules. The Samaritan who went out of his way to help the man was from another culture, a stranger.
The story is about becoming a neighbor to a person in need. Rev’d Elizabeth reminded us that there are so many people in need today and that our parish has risen to the challenge, for instance, by reaching out to children in the first nations community of Pikangikum – people whom we have never met.
Turning to recent and well publicized events at General Synod, Rev’d Elizabeth said “we all have met those from the LGBTQ community, many have LGBTQ friends or relatives.” she said. “At Synod a majority of lay people and clergy voted to change the marriage cannon to allow for same sex marriage, but unfortunately a few Bishops prevented it from passing. The majority of the church is inclusive and voted for love. It is not acceptable that we allow those from the LGBTQ community to take the sacrament of communion and yet deny them the sacrament of marriage.”
The followers of Jesus need the rainbow flag to show we are inclusive. “We should fly it at All Saints. Our motto is ‘come as you are, all are welcome’. We mean it.” Luckily, there are parishes in the Diocese and through Canada that are designated to perform same sex marriages.
“We must continuously ask ourselves, ‘whose neighbor will I be?’”
Submitted by Patrick Gossage