Every year, I tell the story of Martin of Tours to the children of the school and church. I think it’s important that the adults hear this story too, as St. Martin is our namesake, and his life guides our mission.
Martin was a Roman soldier who worked to keep order at any cost, even drawing his sword when necessary. But one day, he encountered a beggar who had nothing, not even clothing to shield him from the scorching heat of the day and cold nights. This tough soldier found that God was calling him to have mercy on the beggar. What did Martin do? He drew his sword, and instead of ordering the man to leave, he cut his cloak and gave half of it to the man to cover him. Martin’s life changed forever, and he continued to lead a life following God’s call of compassion, love and serving others.
This story speaks to us here at St. Martin-in-the-Fields. As Episcopalians and particularly members of this parish, we are all called to be something more than who we are. Even our young children can identify with this story of sharing. God rejoices when we discover that we have something to give, even if we don’t think we do. As Christians, we have so many opportunities each day to give, to respond to God’s call to love our neighbors. As a community of faith, we can do so much together to further the Kingdom of God. We are all called to look for those who are in need of our help, and in helping them, be transformed by the experience. How will you be transformed by who you meet in your life?