In the parable about the loaves and fishes, Jesus performs a so-called “miracle” when he turns a few loaves of bread and fish into enough food to feed the thousands of people who have gathered to hear him.
I like to imagine that the real miracle in this story is not creating food out of thin air, but rather that each who gathered shared what they had, rather than keep it for themselves, and it was enough to feed everyone. Together, there was a feast. The miracle was a miracle of collective generosity.
This winter season, our Holiday Giving recipient is Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative. Two years ago, we invited our congregation to re-imagine their relationship to the Holidays and the consumption that often comes with the Holidays. We invited congregants to cut their holiday spending in half, and together, we gave what we saved to Habitat for Humanity, and built a home for a family.
This year, we’re inviting you to “Give the Gift of Home” to more than just one family. Your holiday gifts to Beacon will:
- Help youth, ages 17-21, have a home and the support services they need at Nicollet Square.
- Provide seed money to help build Great River Landing, high quality multi-unit housing for formerly incarcerated men.
- Help families from Families Moving Forward transition into stable housing.
This holiday season, my wife and I are inviting our friends and family not to give us gifts, but to support Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative, through an online gift in our name, made through the church’s website. I hope you’ll encourage your friends and family to consider this, as well. Check out our website under Generosity/Holiday Giving for ways to communicate your intentions to friends and relatives and discuss with family members.
Miracles aren’t just a thing of the past. Our Holiday Giving Project is a current day “loaves and fishes” miracle. Our individual gifts might not seem like much, but as a 900-member congregation, gifts from $5 to $5,000 add up. We witnessed that as our collective giving power raised $116,000 toward the House that Love Built. Now, we can “Give the Gift of Home” to dozens of our neighbors. And in this giving, we make the true meaning of the Holidays come alive!
Join us for worship on December 20 (at 9:30 and 11:15 a.m.) as we collect our gifts to share with Beacon.
I’ll see you in church,