Laity Sunday is Oct. 15
"Therefore, Go! with HOPE Through Hospitality" is the theme for Laity Sunday 2017. It will be observed Oct. 15.
Often, when thinking of hospitality, we consider it through the lens of how we receive guests in our midst. But the reality is we practice hospitality wherever we are, even when we are outside our home or church. We also receive hospitality. How we do both — offer and receive — reflects how we live out the calling of God upon our lives.
The call of God is active, and it compels us to live out the Great Commission: "Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I've commanded you. Look, I myself will be with you every day until the end of this present age" (Matthew 28:19-20, CEB).
Where in the Great Commission does it say, "Therefore, come!"? It doesn't. It says, "Therefore, go!"
Jesus modeled the Great Commission for us as he sent out disciples who shared HOPE by proclaiming the message that "God's kingdom has come upon you." Jesus sent them out, to reach out and to receive new people into the kingdom of God. Jesus taught them how they were to go out and make new disciples.
On Laity Sunday, The United Methodist Church celebrates that God calls laity as well as clergy to go and make disciples. We are called to be the church together in a world so desperately in need of hope. Therefore, go!
Adapted from an article by Jodi Cataldo, director of Laity in Leadership, Discipleship Ministries, Nashville, Tennessee.