Last night, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Long Beach, God brought out the magnificent divine colors of the human soul which was embroidered within the full context of love. Last night 230 or so people converged on this ground in all walks of life, young and old to see what might happen, and was happened is between their interpersonal relationship with God, but what displayed amongst us who attended was the generous outpouring of affection, and the freedom to stand before God as the fullness of human dignity. People shared their lives, and people were prayed for, and in turn, the corporate body prayed for others. Through all this, lives were transformed. As was hoped, at the after service reception, people naturally shared their own personal stories with others.

In an email Thom Crow, one of the organizers of the National Coming Out Day service shared this story:

“I was talking to a woman who was by herself, talking to no one and she seemed to be crying.  She told me that she had been in the convent years ago. One day she was found with another nun “in the act”. She was brought up as on trial before the whole community of nuns and publicly denounced and called horrible names and then put outside with no money only a few of her clothes. She had not been in a church for the past 30 years!  After the Service she said that she “felt her soul” for the 1st time in 30 years, she was crying, because she thought that she had no soul anymore. Hearing a bishop (and a woman bishop at that) she said that she now knew that God really did still love her.  She said that the service also brought up a  lot of old trauma, and she wasn’t sure if she could come in our doors again, but she hoped that this was the beginning of a process that would lead to wholeness in her life.”

After the service last night, led by The Rt. Rev. Diane Jardine Bruce, who at times during the service was brought to tears, said that she was totally fed, fed in the same way one would be fed receiving Eucharist. Indeed, people were fed last night.

This evening of radical hospitality goes way beyond “evangelism.” Welcoming others in this way does not tell them what to think, or how they should think, or what theology to express, it gracefully allows people the freedom to simple be, and to be within a space of acceptance and love which after all, is the way, the truth and the life.

God in many forms WAS WITH US last night, and was exemplified by the Spirit. If I need a reminder of what the risen Christ is like, all I would have to do is think of the faces, the people, the music, the prayers, and the joy of those around me on October 10, 2010, and I will be refreshed, and fed.