A young woman who showed up out of nowhere in Western Guatemala and guided me and Elizabeth through side streets, a chaotic marketplace, and a back alley to arrive at the meeting place for our Volunteer in Mission team. We never would have made it ourselves. A man wearing a Vietnamese nón lá was fishing from the bank of the Kansas river. Although it was a spot I passed several times a week, I had never seen him before. His basket was full of fish and his smile and gaze jolted me out of a negative and despairing state.
I’ve wondered in retrospect, “Were these angels?” They certainly had messages of salvation for me. One brought me to safety in body, and the other saved my spirit.
This Advent as we hear again the words from Gabriel and other divine messengers, I invite you to look for the angels among us. Notice who is showing up, unexpectedly, with a word of Good News. Be awake to these bearers of surprising and glad tidings. I believe they are all around us.
We also have the opportunity to be angels for others. This year, our Advent offering will support two ministries: the Berkeley Food & Housing Project and the Humanitarian Respite Center in McAllen, Texas, that supports migrants as they come across the US-Mexico border. Epworth has supported these ministries through financial donations, service and mission teams in the past. Let’s show up with good news to these ministries who bear such good news to others. You can make a gift at www.epworthberkeley.org/donate.
May God’s holy angels be very near, and may you experience a blessed Advent, as we prepare for the greatest good news of all, the incarnation of God in the birth of Jesus.
Rev. Kristin Stoneking
For indoor events, masks will be required and social distancing between households encouraged at all times. For outdoor events, please dress for the weather! Please RSVP: