As the CCOA Presiding Bishop mentioned in the opening of this morning’s homily, given at St. Johns CCOA in Las Cruces, the first verses of Matthew 2:1-12 remind us that Jesus came to model inclusion. After all the magi, three kings, astrologers who followed the star were not Jewish.
Going along with this thought, we release that those three were the first of many non-Jewish people, gentiles, pagans who have come to know Jesus. We consider the jabs directed at Jesus during his ministry – he spent time with the so-called sinners, with the unclean, with women. And we consider the dichotomy between Jesus’s reported actions and the actions of many today – sometimes churches, sometimes religious or secular organized groups, sometimes ourselves.
Perhaps it would be wise to pay attention. Is your church inclusionary – are all accepted in the pews, at the altar, for religious orders? Are the secular groups or religious groups that are part of your life also inclusionary, or are some people overlooked or turned away? And, perhaps hardest of all, are you welcoming to all?
Christians don’t always, but should always try, to walk the talk – to follow Jesus’s model. The church we attend, the groups in which we participate, and we ourselves should aim to be as inclusionary as he was. Everyone should be welcome; everyone should be accepted as part of the family!
If not… something is wrong. Very wrong!