I’ve never been prouder of an initiative launched by the church we’ve attended — off and on — for 20 years since moving an hour east of Toronto.
Call it “reaching out,” or “community involvement,” or whatever you want. Cobourg Alliance Church has decided to participate — in a huge way — in the annual walk for Multiple Sclerosis; a walk which just happens to fall on Palm Sunday, what most would consider the third most important Sunday of the year after Easter Sunday and Christmas Sunday.
The church will still hold worship services for those who wish to attend, but the nearly 200 people who have signed up so far is a significant percentage of the regular attendance at church in this town of only 18,500.
Participation also means fundraising, and the pastor, Andre Turcotte, is hoping that the church will be one of the top fundraisers in the area. Those who can’t walk significant distances will be acting as volunteers. There are five individuals and/or families in the church dealing with MS.
I’m sure that organizers of events like this notice a dearth of participation from churchgoers when the events are held on a Sunday. “Skipping Church” is a big sacrifice for those who grew up believing the place to be on Sunday morning is singing the hymns and listening to a sermon.
Instead, this congregation will be busy “being church.”
Though we will be leading worship at another church that Sunday, we will be watching this with interest, and praying that it shows to the local community that Christ followers are willing to, literally, put feet to their beliefs; not just ‘talking the talk,’ but, literally, ‘walking the walk.’