Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost
Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
About a year ago I buried one of our churchâs founding members. Back in 1968, Archie McDonald and a handful of others started our congregation, in order to have a local church with membership policies that were not segregated. Archie was a professor and historian, ornery and rough-hewn, but he had a profound sense that it was only due to the grace of a loving God that he existed at all and only by Godâs grace did our church exist. He knew what the dying priest knew in Bernanosâ Diary of a Country Priest, âItâs all grace.â
The very meaning of the word âgraceâ is âundeserved favor.â We do not deserve it. If it is deserved, then it is not grace and it is certainly not amazing.
Which is why Archieâs favorite hymn was âAmazing Grace.â As he said, âit is the one hymn most about me, especially the part about saving wretches and being found.â And he liked to call our congregation, the âAmazing Grace Baptist Churchâ because there was and continues to be a sense that weâre all lost yet weâve been found by the loving Good Shepherd. Read more