Rebuilding the Temple

david-knightIn 2005 my friend David Knight’s parish, St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church in Long Beach, Mississippi, was completely leveled by Hurricane Katrina. As the church’s rector, this was obviously a defining moment in David’s priesthood. Beyond the immediate crisis ministry (which in many ways continues), the pertinent questions about the church’s future arose: Should we close the church? Should we rebuild? How would we fund a new building? 

After much prayer the congregation, under David’s inspired leadership, chose to rebuild its “temple.” They have put together a compelling video of this process and I urge you to check it out. I’m not usually one to get all emotional over youtube videos (or movies or Hallmark ads for that matter). But this one (nearly) brought me to tears. It’s that powerful.

David reports that 93% of their parishioners (many of whom are still not back in their homes) have contributed to their capital building campaign. But they still need help. I bid you to join me in supporting their “$5,000 for 100″”program, asking 5,000 people to contribute $100 each to the cause. You can donate by going to their homepage and clicking on the “donate” button.

David and his wife Jennifer lived two floors above us in seminary housing at Seabury-Western outside of Chicago. You will never meet two more prayerful, devoted, hilarious Christians. Their witness over the past several years has been an inspiration to me personally and to countless others. Please keep them and the people of St. Pat’s in your prayers. 

As David recently wrote to me, “Working on this video has brought back to me, strong and sweet, bitter and exhausting, a lot of memories. It has been a tough 3 1/2 years for all of us. We are limping to the finish line, financially, and we still need help making it. I am weary yet God is faithful and the Spirit is strong with us. Soon and very soon we will celebrate; we have wept by the banks of the river in Babylon, indeed we have, yet we too shall soon return from exile.”” 

David and his wife Jennifer lived two floors above us in seminary housing at Seabury-Western outside of Chicago. You will never meet two more prayerful, devoted, hilarious Christians. Their witness over the past several years has been an inspiration to me personally and to countless others. Please keep them and the people of St. Pat’s in your prayers. 



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