The Gift of Presence
For nearly two weeks, those of us in the Saint Paul Area Synod have been blessed by the presence of ou[...]
Throughout our faith journey we are constantly exploring various aspects of how we are connected through the cross of Christ. These "connecting stories" help us to gain insight into the deeper connections we share with one another through Christ. The story of the new baptismal font for Milagro de Dios in Las Rosas is one of these stories.
Bethesda shares a partnership covenant with Milagro de Dios in Las Rosas alongside Amazing Grace (Inver Grove Heights) and Living Joy (Prior Lake). In a previous trip, our team worked together to symbolize this budding partnership by building a three-foot cross with Christ carved at the center and the four arms representing the four churches of this global companionship.
After the cross was erected, ILAG posed the question, "Could Bethesda find a way to create a baptismal font for Milagro de Dios?" I immediately fell in love with the idea and began to sketch out some ideas.
After a delegation visited Milagro de Dios and was a part of a special Ascension Day worship service in which 400 congregants gathered to baptize 54 people, it confirmed the necessity of completing the baptismal font.
The details came together; It needed to be simple, lightweight, and collapsible so that it could be transported to Guatemala. Further conversations revealed that Amazing Grace had the perfect baptismal bowl for the project. Living Joy had a gifted artist who could paint images to reflect our partnership. Bethesda had the woodworkers who skillfully crafted baptismal medallions for the font. Once again, our congregational partnership was reflected in this new project.
The outcome is a precious gift that I hope will be used for years to come. The font made the rounds to receive blessings at each of the 3 partner churches, before being packed up and hand delivered to Milagro de Dios.
This baptismal font, created by many, is one more example of how Christ's love lives on in us. These are some of the most beautiful kinds of connection stories we can have in this life, together.
The Rev. Terry Nordheim
Bethesda Lutheran Church , Inver Grove Heights, MN