From the Rev. Spencer W. Brown
Let us with gladness present the offerings and oblations of our life and
labor to the Lord. (BCP 377)
How amazing it was to see so many backpacks spilling from the base of the altar just last Sunday! Through generous donations from parishioners and friends from UNM, we made over 100 backpacks to be given out to kids in kindergarten through 5th grade. We also collected almost $2500 to donate to the Albuquerque Public Schools Supply Closet to help kids in grades 6-12.
These tangible items offered to the glory of God and our neighbors who need them are a testament to the generous spirit of the Cathedral Community. I had many people come to me surprised to find out that filling a single backpack cost $50-75. Our offerings of backpacks and money are a small part of how we are able to extend our abundance to our neighbors.
In addition to noticing the cost, many people remarked, “how can people afford this who are already hurting?”, or “what is a family to do if they have more than one child?” It’s a stark realization about the many ways the pandemic continues to harm those who were already most vulnerable.
Yet with gladness, abundance, and generous hearts we are called to serve and give what we can. Even as we navigate times fraught with divisive language, anger, unshakable thoughts and opinions, we are compelled to continue serving a risen Christ. It’s through acts of giving from our abundance of time, talent, and treasure that we witness glimpses of the Kingdom of God.
It’s through these glimpses that our eyes are opened to the image of God all around us. In less than a week, we’ve given out more than half of the backpacks. We may not see the smiles of receiving new supplies, but we know the joy of that excitement. We know the joy of receiving because we are able to give.
It is in giving that we receive, and in receiving that we witness the glory of God. Thanks be to God for the gifts we have given from our abundance, and thanks be to God for the offerings of time, talent, and treasure given to the backpack drive and to the work of God.