Running the Race

Running the Race

On Sunday, July 26, 2015, I preached my last homily as the Rector of St. Augustine’s Anglican Church. As I retire as the Rector, I shared some thoughts with the congregation, quoting St. Paul in his second letter to St. Timothy. In 2nd Timothy 4:7, he states; “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” It is my sincere hope that the same may be said of me.

Christianity is, indeed, a race. It is not a race in the sense of a bunch of runners lining up and, at the sound of the starter’s pistol, sprinting to the finish line. Christianity is, rather, a relay race. The starter’s pistol sounded on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles, appearing as tongues of flame. That started the race. The Apostles then handed the baton off to other men. We call this Apostolic Succession. It is by Apostolic Succession that we have a valid Eucharistic Feast even today.

The interesting thing about Christianity (well, one of the many interesting things) is that there are no spectators in this race. Christianity is not a spectator sport! Everyone is in this race. The Archbishop leads the international communion in the race, the Bishops lead regions and Rectors lead individual churches. The congregations of those churches are running in this race and their responsibility is to encourage and support the Rector as he leads them forward in the faith. Runners all are we!

As I step down as Rector, I want to commend the congregation of St. Augustine’s. You have been extraordinary fellow runners in this race of faith. You were there when I needed you, you were always willing to step forward and help, you held me in your prayers, and you enveloped Nancy and me in your loving arms. God bless you, and let’s keep running this race!