For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:8 NRSV.

I believe in...the holy catholic Church… The Apostles Creed.

Catholicity is God’s gift to the Church in Jesus Christ. In the life, death, and resurrection of Christ, by the power of the spirit, God overcomes our alienation and repairs our division.

Because in Christ the Church is catholic, it strives everywhere to testify to Christ’s embrace of men, women, and children of all times, places, races, nations, ages, conditions, and stations in life. The catholicity of the Church summons the Church to a deeper faith, a larger hope, and a more complete love as it bears witness to God’s grace.Book of Order F-1.0202c.

Church has always been part of my family life. I had a Methodist mother and a Baptist father; I was always involved in both denominations. The Holiness Church near my house is where I first encountered integrated services in the 1940s and witnessed speaking in tongues. Diverse congregations and services are part of my heritage.

I grew up in a household with strong role models: my grandmother, my mother and my aunt. I was taught that “there are many roads to heaven” and the acceptance of all people - regardless of faith, race and station in life.

Mission work was an everyday occurrence. The large closet in our attic was shared by five girls, and when an article of clothing was outgrown it was taken to the church closet to be passed along. Food and money shared with those in need was done compassionately as not to bring any embarrassment to the recipients.

First Presbyterian Church has given me an opportunity to practice my faith through church services, mission work and study groups, as well as interracial and interfaith meetings. I have had an opportunity to further understand the catholicity of the Church. Joining First Presbyterian Church Spartanburg gave me a church home, a place to practice my faith, a safe place to ask questions, and a family of believers with whom I did not always have to agree. Through God’s grace we can overcome alienation and repair the divisions that separate us.