Church of the Reconciler, a United Methodist congregation for, and with, the homeless of Birmingham, is launching a fundraising project that will help support its unique ministry in downtown Birmingham while offering supporters a unique resource to prepare their hearts during the season of Advent. Read the details below.
Advent is a time of waiting and expectation. It’s a time when we both name that the world is not as it should be while also reaffirming our faith that God will usher in a new heaven and a new Earth so that all that is broken will be repaired and all those wounded will be healed. Sometimes at Church of the Reconciler, we feel like it’s Advent all year as every day we are confronted with the pain of homelessness, addiction, and abuse. Sometimes, it feels like we are perpetually waiting. But then, light breaks through. Homeless men and women offer their amazing gifts in worship. A homeless person moves into permanent housing. An addict enters into recovery. Bridges are built between people from different worlds. And we see the kingdom of God in our midst.
This year, we want to help you wait well during Advent, so we are thrilled to launch the Advent Poetry Project. By making a $25 donation to Church of the Reconciler, you will receive a daily poem by Reconciler member Christina Schmitt during the Advent season (with the exception of Sundays) that offers a meditation on that day's Lectionary readings. Poems are written in form style and free verse and will be emailed to participants each morning. These poems will help the reader enter into a mindset of reflection each day of the Advent Season to prepare one's heart for Christmas.
Christina Schmitt is currently a graduate student at Candler School of Theology at Emory University. She is an avid poet in the Atlanta Slam Poetry community and recently competed at the PSI National Poetry Slam. She has featured at various poetry events in the southeast and was a showcase local poet at the AJC Decatur Book Festival 2018.
You can subscribe to the Advent Poetry Project at www.churchofthereconciler.com.
Here is a sample from the collection:
Day 1 (Thursday Nov 29) (1 Thessalonians 5:1-11)
They never tell you how bright it is,
How Children of the Light
They never tell you how they sweat
How hot the Light can be
Isn’t that just like light,
To be soft. and
All at once?