Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Prayer After Communion

Well, what a (21-hour) day: great stories, smiling faces, but one meal and several vote tallies... all on two hours' sleep.


There is, however, one moment that sticks out. Earlier in the evening, I happened across a friendly face from my hometown, one of our local greats: Philly's beloved Francis Bible Schulte, whose episcopal ministry culminated in 12 years as shepherd of the Crescent City.

Saying goodnight, the archbishop made a heartfelt request which reminded me of the place where, for all the deliberations here these last days, the church's presence is truly needed and cherished most in our land at this moment in our story; the place where many of our own -- the best of our own -- have heroically gone to serve, to lift, to help rebuild so many lives tragically damaged.

As I share his request with all of you, I ask that you join me in it: "Pray for Mother New Orleans."

Pray, too, for all those who've gone and continue to go, literally or otherwise, into the flood in Louisiana and Mississippi, that the protection and blessings merited by such generous sacrifice may be theirs, both now and long after their return home. And pray for all those intrepid souls who, in and out of season, continue the sterling legacy of the church's service across this country, and the many who continue to look to us for help and sustenance in the journey.

As always, it's our unsung heroes whose work will long outlast our words. And how soon we forget, eh?

So pray for Mother New Orleans. And goodnight from the Premier See.