Given by Rev. Madison Shockley June 28, 2020

Those who welcome you are welcoming me. Those that welcome me are welcoming the One who sent me. The lesson we learn from Jesus is that, sometimes, welcoming someone is not always easy. By reading the entire 10th chapter, we can better understand the true meaning of Jesus’s message. It is in this chapter that Jesus empowers the disciples to continue his ministry. Jesus warns them that not everyone will welcome them. Today, many blacks can remember places/churches where they did not feel welcome. In many churches, women are not welcome in the pulpit. This is especially true for our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. It is important to recognize that not everyone has a good experience. Those of us at Pilgrim are not immune. Maybe someone was too conservative or too evangelical to us. We must strive to do better. Today an example of a new type of welcome is wearing a mask. It says I care about your health.  A mask can make different political statements too. It can be I care about you, I love you, or I protest in peace. Sometimes this message is not well received. God sends us out into the world to proclaim the Good News of love, peace, and justice. We will be followers of God.