In 2012 we went to France at the end of April for our post-Easter break, in 2013 we went to England at the end of April, then last year we discovered that the rugby European cup final would be in Wales in late May, so we took our break later and found our way to the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, after visiting various family members in the previous week. In 2015, it was planned that the final would be in Milan in the great San Siro stadium. We worked out that we could get cheap flights to France and travel in stages to Milan to be there to see the match. Anyway, anyone who knows about rugby will know that the competition changed, that it was no longer the Heineken Cup, and that the final was shifted from the end of May to the beginning of May, and instead of being in Milan it was in London.
A couple of weeks ago, Katharine wondered why our post-Easter break was coming so late that it was actually after Pentecost. I wondered as well, then remembered,”Milan”, I said, “we were going to get the train to Milan”. Instead of going to the San Siro in Milan, we have a booked a caravan on a campsite near Perpignan, where we stayed in 2012.
As we had forgotten why we were going away so late, sometimes people can carry on doing things and forget about why they are doing them.
Sometimes people can forget about why they are members of the church. It is easy to get caught up with keeping things going, with keeping up our traditions and being part of our community, and it is easy to forget why we are members.
The Bible readings we have heard in church in recent Sundays are a reminder to us of what being a church member means. In the Acts of the Apostles, Peter talks about “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; but God raised him on the third day”.
Being a church member is obviously part of our tradition and part of the life of our community, but first and foremost it means believing in Jesus who was raised from the dead, without that none of the rest of it makes any sense. If being a church member is about believing in the risen Jesus, then what should that mean for each of us?
Let’s not forget why we do things.