By Rev. Joe Walker, Minister of Congregational Care

If someone were to ask, “Where is your church,” how would you answer that question?

Likely, your first response would be to give the location of the physical building, “It’s that beautiful gothic church on Ward Parkway.” During these summer months, you might also pause to add a footnote about the construction or even consider a broader answer to the question.

As you know, we employ the English word “church” in two senses, to indicate a physical building and as a reference to the people of God either in a particular congregation or the one, universal Body of Christ. Thinking of church in the later sense of the word, a second response could sound like, “Our church will be having a fun, intergenerational activity in Franklin Park on Wednesday, come join us.” How about, “Our church is going to ScrapsKC to sort used school supplies and that is so much fun, would you like to come, too?” Or, “Our church is in Ecuador this week, as our high school youth are there on a service-learning trip.” When we think about it, our church is serving with our ministry partners, at civic events, visiting the sick and homebound, and present in many other expressions of God’s love in action in our world.

This also reminds us, while we may be separated by travel, construction, or health, to be in daily prayer for and with one another. It might prompt a prayer if you imagine those people who sit in a pew near you, the children scurrying to the cookies, or the elderly struggling to get their walker through the door. You might allow extra time to prepare for your participation in Sunday worship or your response to the sermon. Perhaps you could set aside time each day to lift up one of our ministry partners and the people they serve.

As we hold one another in prayer, yet another answer to the question, “Where is your church,” comes to mind. “Right here,” as you tap your hand over your heart.