Keynote One: The Promise and the Premise: an introduction to the gathered-scattered church, by The Rev. Dwight DuBois
By Rev. Michele Fischer
When the South Carolina Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America gathered in Charleston on Monday, May 22, they heard from Pastor Dwight DeBois. DuBois is an ELCA pastor and instructor at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa, and is the author of The Scattering: Imagining a Church that Connects Faith and Life (Wipf & Stock, 2015).
In his presentation, he reminded those assembled that we are all ministers of the church and that we are already doing ministry in our daily lives. Too often, we believe that “ministry” is something extra. We often believe that doing ministry in our daily lives does not include the work we are already doing. When we are taking care of our children or caring for elderly parents, we are doing ministry.
We have forgotten that ministry is happening every day in our lives, and that we are all out there proclaiming the good news of God’s love whenever we are helping one another, whether we are working in the church or not. Being ministers of God’s Church does not mean volunteering more time at church. It is our participation in our daughter’s Girl Scout Troop or coaching little league.
What would happen if we could help all the members of all our congregations remember this simple truth? Pastor DuBois believes that helping people to recognize the many ways they are serving Jesus in the world will bring new life and vitality into our churches.