And Also With You

& also with you

by Laura Checkett, March 25, 2023

a return to love

to guide us forward

in this time; in this moment

for this time; for this moment

to love

to see

to know

to be in community with each other

with those who we don’t understand

& also with those who don’t

understand us

with those who feel familiar

& also with those who feel different

even in our struggle

and also with our struggle

even in our pain

and also with our pain

peace be with you

& also with you.

In the liturgy of the church, we have this greeting. One person says, “The Lord be with you,” or some similar phrase. And the group replies, “And also with you.” There are some for whom this response is so deeply ingrained in their hearts, speaking it aloud is almost habitual. 

I have always loved this greeting, in particular for the profound solidarity it expresses. The greeting says, in four simple words, that we belong together, connected by the mystical bonds of grace made known in the presence of the Holy Spirit among us.

“Solidarity is a unity that requires something of us,” writes Cole Arthur Riley. It is more than just hospitality or tolerance. It is a unity that stands up for each one in the community, no matter what. 

The Lord is indeed with you … and also with you.


Pastor's Note

The Missouri Annual Conference

Every year, United Methodists from all across the Missouri Conference gather together for our annual meeting. This year, the meeting will be Friday June 9 through Sunday June 11 in St. Charles. Manchester UMC will be represented there by Revs. Andy Bryan, Phil Estes, Winter Hamilton, and Jim Peich. Our

Learn More »

My Chains Fell Off

Conversion is a key idea in Wesleyan theology, and was a central part of the faith stories of both John and Charles. And conversion isn’t about going from “non-Christian” to “Christian.” Conversion can happen in the lives of believers, also. Conversion is a change that is worked in the lives

Learn More »
Pastor's Note

Charles in Charge

Charles Wesley was the poet of the birth of Methodism. In his lifetime, he composed thousands of hymns! His beautiful words captured the theology, the spirit, and the energy of the Methodist movement with vivid elegance. Charles was one of the children of Susannah Wesley, who was a profound spiritual

Learn More »