Homecoming 2023 at Live Oak

It wasn’t until my senior year in high school that I actually learned what “Homecoming” referred to. I attended a new high school, that was using the build-up plan. They started just with a freshman class, the next year that class advanced and we had a freshman and sophomore class, etc. I was part of the second graduating class, so it wasn’t until I was a senior that there was anyone to come home. “Oh, THAT’S what ‘Homecoming’ means!”

Every year at this time, we have our church Homecoming service. Part of it is an acknowledgment that many people travel during the summer, so we may not see everyone as regularly as we do during the rest of the year. Homecoming is where we all come back together, sharing stories about where we’ve been and what we’ve been doing.

But Homecoming is larger than just ending the summer. It’s an expression of the commitment that we make to one another, to be in each other’s lives, sharing in each other’s joys, sorrows, growth, and adventures.

It’s so easy nowadays, to get out of a routine, even one that brings us happiness and fulfillment. (Just ask me about my exercise routine which has taken a hit during this hot summer.) One day becomes another, and we look up to realize we have let something go unintentionally.
And, it can be so hard to start a new routine. “I’ll do it next week,” we say about something we want to do, but maybe feel a little anxious about, it being new and all.
But this Sunday is Homecoming. And for those who want to be here, this can be the call to come home. “Come home, we missed you. Come home, even if we’ve never met, we are your village and your spot is ready. Come home to this house of progressive values, of ethics, of compassion, of justice. Come home and be reminded that there are people who share your understandings of the world, of what is moral, and the necessity of kindness. Come home to your village where we may share our journeys with each other, and be reminded of the shared journey we all share.
Come home.”