Tomorrow the worldwide church will celebrate "St. Michael and All Angels," It was on this day many years ago that I was ordained a priest in Christ's "One holy and catholic Church." Christians and indeed adherents of other religions have felt accompanied by empowering spirits of various sorts. Our scriptures testify to this reality and indeed angels seem to make their appearance known at precipitous times when a lot is at stake e.g. Gabriel appears to Mary. At the same time, many people interpret these appearances as metaphorical of the Holy Spirit's intervention in human hearts for the benefit of the human race.
My natural bent is to think in this "metaphorical way" but lately I've been listening to stories of people who have been deeply affected by the appearance of "spirits" in their lives, some visible, some just "sensed." There is no doubt that these experiences changed these people. If you've had an experience with "spirits," whether that be "angels" or "ghosts" and it has changed you I'd be interested in hearing your story. Here's what For All the Saints says about the day we'll celebrate tomorrow:
Many good and faithful Christians find it difficult to accept the existence of angels; for them, angels have no more reality in fact than unicorns, griffins, or the phoenix. It may be true that the existence of angels is not one of the things in which Christians must believe if they want to be saved. Yet whenever Christians say the Nicene Creed, they confess that God has created “all that is, seen and unseen.” Entertaining the possibility of angels may be one way of acknowledging the sheer diversity of life, visible and invisible, that God has ordained in creation.
To that, I say Amen!
In Christ's Love, Fr. Allen Doerksen
This week I am blessed to be on retreat in Nanaimo with author/teacher Cynthia Bourgeault. The Healing Eucharist at 10 am on Friday will be presided by Rev. Andrew Halladay from St. Andrew’s Langley. Following the Eucharist, we will focus on the Christian practice of "Listening to God". It will be an opportunity to explore invitations to listen to God from scripture, saints & mystics, to name the ways we already hear from God, and to explore new ways of hearing. Katherine Murray from St. Dunstan’s and the Centre for Spiritual Renewal, a Postulant for Ordination to the Diaconate in the Diocese of New Westminster, will lead this circle time. We are extremely blessed to have these wonderful people lead us on Friday! Coffee/tea will be available. See you on Sunday at 9 am and next week.
Grace upon grace,