The Rev. Shirley Bowen, executive director of the Seeds of Hope Neighborhood Center housed at Christ Church in Biddeford, tells a great story. Check out her article featured in the August edition of Vestry Papers.
She describes the transformation made by the people of Christ Church in becoming a ministry-centered neighborhood center with the Baptismal Covenant at the heart of their service to their neighbors.
This was a critical moment in the life of the parish. With an endowment already in place, the parish could have decided to reduce the priest-in-charge position to an even smaller percentage and continue for a very long time. Or, the parish could listen to the Baptismal Covenant, take the risk of expending all its endowed income on serving others, and possibly eventually close or become something very different. We chose the latter, and have never once looked back in sorrow.