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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Monday, July 8, 2013

Returning Home

I have not been to a reunion in 15 yrs. If this might be your story or if you know of another that would relate to this scenario please read on. Within the depths of our life experiences are events that connect us to our earlier years, our earlier friends, our earlier feelings and body, mind and soul memory of the inter-twining of those elements. Contrasted from the typical school reunion experience; our Community of Christ reunion experience is a nurturing blessing of affirmation.

As our car approached the Ziontario grounds and familiar landmarks became visible, I physically sensed the anticipation and hope of our arrival. The meandering approach road to the heart of the reunion gathering places stirred my soul with glimpses of past moments of worship, community, laughter, learning and joy. And then, at the brow of the hill opened the vista of people living the moments of reunion life.

Apprehensions that typically run through one’s mind after a 15 yr absence anywhere, quickly dissipate in the warmth, enfolding hugs and graciousness of regular people opening themselves to others, to us. I sensed the, “Come as you are, be who you are, enter within the safe and loving presence of our sacred community environment.” In our own lives we may encounter the Prodigal experience of returning home without fear of rejection, judgment or questioning. You are one of us, amongst us and welcomed by us. How powerful is this reality which is counter culture to a world that measures worth by what you have, are, or will bring to benefit me.

Reunion also enables us to feel safe, to give of ourselves, to enter the spirit of becoming a blessing one with another. To enact within our own lives the powerfully joyful role of the parents of the prodigal in welcoming with every fibre of our being, the returning child we have yearned to embrace.

Within our Community of Christ faith community, reunions nurture what we talk about and make flesh the goodness we each want and yearn to express in our lives. We come together with expectations and intentions to encounter sacredness in our midst enhanced by the presence of one another.

I renewed friendships with folks who like me were difficult to recognize, whose eyes and voices revealed the secret of their identity but who within moments of shared memories were instantly that dear friend of old surpassing time and change. How wondrous is that renewal, how mutually life affirming is that experience multiplied many times over within our reunion community. People emerged from almost every decade of my life with memories that deeply and meaningfully touched me.

I am visiting every CEM reunion for a day to reacquaint with you and meet new folks. As I approach my new role as the new CEM Financial Officer I hope our lives will become intertwined with the vision of what can be as our community is renewed in the nurturing and fulfilling experience of reunion.

From someone who has been apart from the fellowship of Community of Christ since it was RLDS, I invite you to return home, as I, to the roots of your youth, the joy of fellowship, the journey of a people in mission. Learn more about and experience the transformation of our Community of Christ faith community bringing relevance to today’s needs and challenges.

See you at Reunion!  

Kerry Richards

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