A few weeks ago on this blog, Mark discussed some of the spiritual lessons present in the Welcome Project. The day-to-day experience of change is a powerful teacher. It is not only the spiritual lessons that are meaningful, but also the ordinary ones.
I have spoken to some of you over the past few weeks about how frustrating it is on Sunday mornings, how challenging it is to find your way, or to anticipate which path is going to be clear and accessible. As we all know, there is no way out of this upheaval but to move through it. And so, all of us in this community are experiencing the upheaval of this construction in different ways.
I know that a few of you are avoiding church altogether for the summer, knowing that there is no way you will feel comfortable coming in the building, using stairs, or walking a longer distance from the parking lot. We miss you! And I, for one, look forward to the time when this is all finished, and we can be together again.
As a physically able-bodied person, I am noticing that my ongoing discomfort is giving me a deeper sense of empathy for people who struggle with mobility and access to space every day. I realize that my experience of having to go around the block to find an entrance I can use, or limiting my movement throughout the day due to shifting, changing progress outside, is a common occurrence for others. This is the kind of experience that stretches my understanding of what it means to be a welcoming community.
The best part of it all, though, is the enthusiasm and cooperation I see happening around me. I see that you are working hard to make things work, even though it is confusing and different. You are helping each other and being resourceful, and enjoying our Sunday time together in the midst of the chaos.
I am so excited to see this progress being made on such an important project, and to live and work in a cooperative and helpful community.