Yesterday I went to the Living Faith awards as I have every year since 2004. It is always an inspiring morning and this year was no exception.
Last year these awards began to be sponsored by the Spirituality Network instead of the Columbus Metropolitan Area Church Council and because of my ties to this organization I have found it to be even more meaningful.
to quote the booklet: The Living Faith Awards honor individuals who create a more hopeful, peaceful, and faithful world. Recipients of those awards are those laypersons who exemplify dynamic faith in their lives, those whose faith is both "lived" and "alive" in ways that inspire, challenge, and serve. Honorees embody any or all of the following values
- tending to the 'least of these"
- caring for creation
- loving neighbor AND self
And so, like Monday night I found myself in the company of people that I greatly admire as they seek to pay attention to the leadings of the spirit to work to make this world better.
there was a keynote by a Don and Nancy Kelley, sharing their faith stories through 60 years of marriage, raising a family and working in the community through the Catholic church. 8 individuals were recognized for various ministries.
Some of the highlights for me:
- every person spoke truly humbly about being recognized.
- one person said: "ugliness is everywhere because life is unfair but beauty is out there" and I was struck by how called we are to see and create beauty in this world.
- another person whose life had been devoted to ministry with youth said - "each one teach one" and that really spoke to me.
- someone else spoke of her own terrible childhood of abuse and gave herself as an example of the fact that the cycle of abuse and devastation can be broken. She has been involved in the "women to women" program that has touched so many people's lives and changed them.
- some one else said that this recognition was "re-cognition" - a knowing again that God is presenting loving and shaping us and that we need to stay connected to God, to Jesus, and to spirit.
As I write this, I confess that I am a person who never misses the Oscars and the emmy's because I love awards shows. This was so special and so spiritual. There was no corporation behind this event, no branding, no selling, no money raising.
this was people of faith re - cognizing the power and call of God in all of our lives and the beauty of a life of self giving.