This Sunday, Central's preachers are bringing up the Holy Spirit - a full two weeks before Pentecost. It's not completely radical, the Revised Common Lectionary assigned Acts 10:44-48 to the 6th Sunday of Easter. I don't know if the logic of the people behind the Lectionary was to start getting the Holy Spirit on our minds before Pentecost or if the inclusion is simply an acknowledgment that you can't contain the Holy Spirit to a single Sunday or season. As Jesus noted way back in John 3:8, "The wind (same word as "spirit") blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes."
The Spirit is beyond our control and, as Acts 10 points out, if the Spirit gets into people we might have labeled "unqualified," it's time for us to celebrate, rather than resist, what the Spirit is doing in them.
The Holy Spirit has been at work at Central for nearly 150 years. Amazingly, some of Central's church family have been members for over half that time. I'm grateful for the deep and lasting commitment of so many church members. When you see the number of members who have been part of Central for 50 or more years, it's something to celebrate, indeed. It's especially exciting when you know many of them and some of the ways the Holy Spirit has been active in their lives.
The faith and commitment of our more seasoned members makes it possible to have vital ministry for all ages. The sanctuary services this weekend will be especially impressive as 67 young voices (members of Masterworks Children's Choir of Florence and Cary Youth Voices from Cary, North Carolina) will lead worship.
As always, who knows what the Holy Spirit will do in and out of our worship services. The only way to know what the Spirit will do in them, is to be here.