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  • The Rev. Arianne Rice

Community of Love

Listen to Presiding Bishop Michael Curry's powerful sermon on the transformative power of Love that he shared with the world at the Royal Wedding this past Saturday!

At the 234th Convention of the Diocese of Maryland, our theme was how all of us are called to be a community of Love and to bring that sense of community into all of our ministry and work. This is how we share the gospel of good news that has been shared with us.

The Church of the Good Shepherd was represented by lay delegates, Bev MacVaugh and Hillary Zouck Shaffer. Willis Morales served as our youth delegate. Below are their reflections from convention and a link to the preaching and address given, as well as the resolutions that were discussed and adopted.

Where are you being called to engage in this Community of Love? How can you connect with ministry at Good Shepherd that will strengthen your awareness that "God is Love"? In what ways might your faith deepen and grow if you open yourself to new communities that need you to share the good news of God's love?


Hillary writes, As this week began, quotes from the conference speakers were still fresh on the mind. My guess is that all attendees, lay and clergy, left the event refreshed and recharged, able to bring renewed faith and hope into the greater community, far beyond church walls. Bishop Latrell Miller Easterling reminded us:

- ABIDING is about real community, with and for each other, that which “moves into the neighborhood”.

- Doing is NOT “being with”, as it does not create lasting change in either the recipient or giver.

Rev Scott Mayrer asserted that, "We must chose “living over survival, and love over fear." And asked us, "how do we balance the power of love with the love of power?

As we at Good Shepherd reflect on the past year of our parish and look ahead to what is upcoming, these words from Convention are helpful guiding lights.

Bev adds, The Bishop’s address on the opening day of the convention, emphasized the current mission statement of the Episcopal Church: Encounter Christ and Love the World.

It is Bishop Suttons’ goal that our community strive to build a solid community of love, by proclaiming and embodying love wherever we go. He describes this effort as planetary revolution of love. The Bishop goes on to list the five ways Love is named in the Greek in the New Testament: Eros (romantic), Storge (familial), Philla (love of a friend), and Agape (Christian love of God). The Bishop gave us his list of the building blocks, he believes are needed for this effort.

1. Truth – speak the truth in love, and love the way of truth that gives life.

2. Listening – the act of putting on the skin of others, as if it were our own.

3. Commit to change.

4. Practice asking for forgiveness.

Using the Bishop’s theme of love, the convention went forward to have healthy debate and discussions (with comprehensive input from clergy, lay members and youth) to pass the following resolutions. Clergy and Lay employee Compensation Offer Caring, Practical Reponse to the Opiod Abuse Crisis in Our Communities. In Support of Common Sense Gun Control Measures In Support of the Nation's Poor Peoples Campaign.

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