“It is the business of the Church to recognize that the secular vocation, as such, is sacred. Christian people, and particularly perhaps the Christian clergy, must get it firmly into their heads that when a man or woman is called to a particular job of secular work that is as true a vocation as though he or she were called to specifically religious work.” — Dorothy Sayers
Does your work matter to God? According to the renowned British playwright Dorothy Sayers, “secular” work, i.e. the work that most New Yorkers toil over, is as sacred as the work that pastors perform. If you read her words carefully, you will realize that work outside the church is as important to God as the work that happens inside the church. Why is this? Simply put, because “the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it” (cf. Psalm 24:1). Sayers understood what it meant that God was sovereign over all the earth, and that His providential care did not stop at the church door.
In the 20th century few Christians have understood the importance of work in God’s kingdom as well as Sayers. At a time when the church was not helping parishioners connect their faith to their work, Sayers prophetically asserted that, “work is not, primarily, a thing one does to live, but the thing one lives to do.”
Yet how is the church equipping her members to answer these questions? In a city that is dominated by work, are we raising a new generation of Christians who know how to answer the question, “Why does your work matter to God?” Are we equipping New Yorkers to meaningfully and tactfully integrate faith into their work?
The Gotham Fellowship, a ministry of the Center for Faith and Work, began three years ago with the purpose of equipping Christians to do just that. This nine-month intensive program focuses on three important areas for effective cultural leadership: 1) theological training, 2) spiritual development, and 3) community formation.
This past Labor Day weekend was the inauguration of our third Gotham Class. Like our two previous classes, these Fellows come from diverse vocational backgrounds. They are district attorneys, principals, web designers, nurses, entrepreneurs, artists, and architects serving the for-profit and non-profit worlds. What they all share in common is the awareness that their work matters to God.
Let me introduce to you this year’s Fellows and ask for your prayers for: Angelin Baskaran, Benjamid Schmid, Brannon McAllister, C.J. Masimore, Chris Dolan, Christina Farinacci, Claire Dow, Cooper Westendarp, Darren Jer, Dasha Rettew, Edmond Tam, Elizabeth Crouch, Erik Anderson, Joanna Stephens, John Lin Jonathan Cheng, Jonathan Ng, Karen Won, Katherine Nesbeda, Marissa Maren, Sarah Davis, Somi Lee, Stephanie Lo, and Tony Ford.
To learn more about the Gotham Fellowship, visit: www.gothamfellowship.org.