Bishop Cedrick D. Bridgeforth offers words of encouragement and an Easter charge to look out into our communities to find partners and to learn how we can be light and love for those who need it. His short message reflects on some positive signs, experiences and learnings during his first three months as resident bishop of the Greater Northwest Episcopal Area of The United Methodist Church.
Hello, I’m Bishop Cedrick Bridgeforth, the resident bishop of the Greater Northwest Area of The United Methodist Church. And I’m grateful to share with you just for a few moments today. I’d hoped by now I’d have an opportunity to share a more comprehensive message with you. But I began January 1 and I have been busy. In fact, just a few weeks ago, I had the privilege of journeying to Anchorage, Alaska, where we chartered Ola Toe Fuataina, a Samoan congregation. It was a grand celebration, where we joined together with other United Methodists from around the Anchorage area to celebrate this new beginning.
During this time, I’ve also hosted many meet and greets, both in person and online. And I’ve gotten a chance to hear from many laity and clergy about some of the hopes and dreams that you have in your local churches, your community and even for our greater area. And I’m thankful for those of you who have taken time to reach out to me, to share with me during this time. I got the chance to meet with all of our conference leaders, and hear from them about the great work that they’re doing to make a difference in our area.
And beyond our local United Methodist churches, I’ve also had the opportunity to meet several of our ecumenical and interfaith leaders. And I’ve appreciated the ways in which we’ve maintained partnerships throughout the years. And I look forward to opportunities to build upon those relationships, and even to strike out and start new ones.
In the time that I’ve been with you, I’ve learned a lot, and there’s so much more for me to get to know, I don’t know everything there is to know about your systems, about policies of the Greater Northwest area. But I am learning. I also can share with you that I know quite a bit about myself. I know that I’m committed to having a positive impact wherever I serve. I know that I am open and willing to work with everyone who’s willing to do the work that helps us achieve our mission. I also know that I am focused on the resurrection. I am focused on what new life looks like for each and every one of us, whether we’re talking about clergy, laity, our congregations, but most especially the communities that God has called us to serve.
In this Easter season. I think it’s very important for us to take an opportunity to look out around us and see those who are calling out for us to come alongside them, to look out and listen for those voices of those who are calling out seeking partnership and collaboration. Those who are calling out for a light and new life, because we can bring that, we can offer that, we are called to bring that and offer that.
So as we enter this Easter season, may you seek opportunities to bring new life, in your congregations and in your communities. May you seek opportunities to know more about yourself and those that God has called you to serve. May you be blessed and may you be a blessing this Easter season.
© Copyright 2023, Greater Northwest Episcopal Area. All Rights Reserved.