A Liminal Season (Part 2)

The first newsletter article I wrote after arriving at College Avenue was about “liminal seasons.” A liminal season is an in-between space, a time of ambiguity and unknowing. We have been in that season for nearly two years now.

Two years ago we were receiving a new pastor, discussing the possibility of moving to a new location, and anticipating big decisions and changes within our denomination. None of us could have predicted that eight months later we would be in the midst of a global pandemic. That global pandemic launched into yet another year-long (and more) liminal season.

Liminal seasons try our patience, we want the future to be here NOW! We are tired of feeling uncertain, stuck, and anxious. We are exhausted. Richard Rohr describes liminal seasons this way:

…a unique position where human beings hate to be but where the biblical God is always leading them. It is when you have left the tried and true, but have not yet been able to replace it with anything else. It is when you are finally out of the way. It is when you are between your old comfort zone and any possible new answer. If you are not trained in how to entrust and wait, you will run…anything to flee this terrible cloud of unknowing.

At some point in a liminal season, we begin to see the plan, the purpose emerge. I think we, as a congregation, are at that point. Life is beginning to get back to some semblance of normalcy. We are moving toward becoming a 2-point charge with Riverside in hopes of becoming a new merged congregation.

The ‘biblical God’ Rohr referred to is leading us to become a new congregation with new mission and vision. This is exciting news! It is scary, it is ambiguous, but it is also fresh and alive with possibilities. As I pass the baton to Rev. Keith, I am eager to see where God will be taking the new congregation to come. Both churches will honor the legacy of those who have gone before as they move into the future by learning new ways to reach the coming generations for Christ. This makes life in the liminal season all worth it.

I pray God’s peace and grace over you as you move forward where the God of new beginnings leads.

Pastor Karen

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