What does it mean to serve? On TikTok, ‘serve’ means ‘looking good;’ in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego, it means something similar, being the good for each other—to care for our neighbors in the same way we care for ourselves (Matthew 22:37).
Throughout 2023, the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego is setting out to serve our neighbors. In preparation, Bishop Susan and guest speakers hosted a four-week webinar series on the Theology of Service that you can view here. And, throughout Lent, hundreds are reading The New Parish* as a book study–learning how your parish, your church, is responsible for more than just the people that attend; it is responsible for the care of the neighborhood–of the neighbors.
But how do we set out to serve? How do we start?
Diocesan Missioner for Community Engagement, Deann Rios, created guiding principles, guiding questions, and helpful support links that will aid in finding what is right for your community.
Service reconnects us to one another–an exchange that involves using one’s resources for the benefit of another. This effort for another’s benefit is “service.” No other word fits so well. No other word captures the essential meaning. This is one way we fulfill Jesus’ command to love our neighbors.
In benefiting another, we benefit as well. Service provides opportunities for us to grow. It transforms us into happier members of society. It creates a more connected, stronger community. And it is the work of Jesus Christ, your church, and your Diocese.
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