Cal-Pac Conference staff members at The United Methodist Center were gathered on Thursday, September 4, 2014, for a spiritual devotion led by Resident Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño.
Sitting in chairs around the lunch room, staff members heard from this week’s lectionary epistle, Romans 13:8-14. The devotion was a reminder to staff that the work in which they are a part is that which belongs to Jesus Christ.
Bishop Carcaño shared a story about an encounter that she had with a young person during a visit to a Cal-Pac local church. This boy was an acolyte of the church. And, by the way that he carried himself, it was clear that he took the role seriously. After worship had ended and everyone was sitting in the fellowship hall, she motioned for him to come sit next to her where, in the midst of their conversation, Bishop Carcaño shared that her father had passed away not too long ago.
Suddenly, his presence changed and he said to her with great maturity, “I know what that feels like.”
What he meant was that one of his parents had passed away in another country and he was not able to be present with that parent. In addition, his siblings were in that other country as well. Today, he is taken care of by his other parent. But, he was in grief.
“These are members of our church,” said Bishop Carcaño. “And, as we do our work, we might perhaps ‘follow the commandments,’ by doing only the minimum of what is necessary to complete a task. But, this passage from Apostle Paul tells us that the work of Christ is to go beyond that with our love for one another, love for our churches and our members, and love for the world. This boy taught me through his love for his church what this means.”
As the devotion ended, bookmarks with the Cal-Pac vision statement printed on them were distributed. The purpose of the bookmarks is to encourage the staff to know of how their work can “inspire the world as passionate followers of Jesus Christ so that all may experience God’s life-giving love.”
It is common to hear laughter throughout the office of The United Methodist Center. But, on this particular day, humming and singing could be heard of songs that were sung during the devotion. It is a sign that the Cal-Pac staff is ready to aim high with love in seeking to achieve the vision of the Conference that has been given from God.