Who is undesirable?
Who is welcome?
This week I received an email from a local councillor that – in her anger – described certain residents of Hayes as ‘undesirable’.
I can certainly understand her anger. We’ve all seen the effects of drugs on our streets. The effects of those with violence in their hearts. The effects of those who care not for the wellbeing of others.
On a personal level I’ve experienced the worst that Hayes has to offer!
But… we must never ever be tempted to describe our fellow human beings as ‘undesirable’ – because to do so rejects the very nature of who they are – created in the image of God.
There is evil in the world and we pray that we can banish that evil – but that doesn’t mean pushing away people – that means embracing them.
The only way evil is banished is when it is driven out by love.
If you fight evil with evil – you enhance it and make it stronger.
This is one of the central and most power messages in the Gospels.
Jesus tells us again and again and again to love one another – as He loved us!
It’s hard to love a person who has attacked you, or makes your life difficult, or frightens you. But love them you must.
How we treat those we don’t like shows the depth of our character. Who we invite to our table shows the depth of our faith.
St. Anselm is a place of welcome for all, and especially perhaps most of all for the ‘undesirables’.
Because in that welcome we start to shine a light into the darkness… and then there’s a chance we can defeat it.
In love, as always,
We have a new director of music – Anthony Wang. Thank you everyone who welcomed him so warmly last week. His first mass will be with us on the 18th July when +Jonathan comes to bless the church hall (3pm).
A huge thank you to those who have cleaned, done the flowers and worked hard to make the church as welcoming as possible. A particular thank you to Shirley who has cleaned every kneeler over the last two weeks!
Rosary Mission – postponed. The extension of restrictions into July has meant we’ve not been able to make the mission happen in a spirit of overwhelming generosity – so we have decided to postpone. News on new dates soon.
Help fund an organist – please consider setting up regular giving with the Parish Giving Scheme. Call 0333 002 1271 with your bank details to hand and quote our Parish Code – 230 623 503 or visit our website www.stanselm.co.uk/giving