A letter from Kay Day in Malawi
Dear Family and Friends,
Greetings from the Warm Heart of Africa. This month I have been reminded of how connected we are in the Body of Christ because of the gift of electronics.
On World Communion Sunday God connected the church I am serving now with the church I last served in Pittsburgh. It was humbling. The pastor serving Mt. Pisgah and I arranged for a Skype connection during their worship. This was a surprise for the Mt. Pisgah congregation. One of the session clerks from Limbe planned to join me, to make the connection church to church. At the end of September the Mt. Pisgah pastor told me that she would not be in worship on Oct. 2, but her husband, also a minister, would be filling in for her. On Saturday before the Skype the parish chair of Limbe informed me that representatives from one of the zones of the church (geographic areas) would be coming on Sunday afternoon for a manse visit—it was a time for the zone to bring food and encouragement to the pastor. I explained about the Skype conversation that was scheduled for 4 p.m. and he assured me the group would be at the manse early in the afternoon. They arrived at 3:30.
At that point God made his plan clear. I explained the Skype call and the group eagerly agreed to be a part of this world connection. They had come for one purpose, but in perfect time to be a part of the Body of Christ. The visiting pastor at Mt. Pisgah had only told the congregation that there was a special greeting for World Communion Sunday. They thought it was his wife from Spain. When I appeared on the big screen the church uses for the worship service, someone in the congregation let out a whoop that folks on both sides of the ocean heard. I gave greetings, made a few remarks, did introductions and took a few questions, and then we sang a chorus we had prepared for them. Mt. Pisgah cheered and then responded by singing the doxology for us. The folks here joined in and together we praised God, although 10,000 miles apart. It was a powerful, spontaneous moment. After the pastor prayed we said our goodbyes. As we disconnected, the organist played the introduction to the next hymn, "In Christ There Is No East or West." How true! We had just experienced it.
That was reinforced this past Sunday when five young people from Limbe connected with 14 young people from Wycliffe Presbyterian Church in Youngstown, Ohio, via Skype as these “young disciples” learned about how God is working on both sides of the Atlantic. They asked questions, shared interests, and began friendships, sharing favorite Bible verses with each other. They plan to connect again in November to build the relationship.
On both occasions folks were delighted to celebrate the Body of Christ around the world. We praise God for connecting us in Spirit, and by electronics. Ours is an awesome God, in whom there is no east or west…but one great fellowship of love throughout the whole wide earth. I pray you have experienced that this month as well in your own ways.
Yours in Christ’s love,
The 2011 Mission Yearbook for Prayer & Study, p. 67
The 2012 Mission Yearbook for Prayer & Study, p. 106