May 22, 2016
When our Table on the Green ministry first started, we launched this dinner service using the powerful Trinitarian term: “Perichoresis”. Reactions were potent: Peri-what? The title sounded to some like a pharmaceutical product that would appear in TV-ads with lengthy and ominous sounding disclaimers.
The powerful meaning of the term that inspired the founders of our Table on the Green ministry seemed to miss a necessary marketing edge. Literally “Perichoresis” means rotation, in the active sense of going around. This Peri-what? / “Perichoresis” attempts to express the love dynamic of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, as a love whereby each person keeps revisiting the other with the mindset of a servant, seeking to help the other grow and flourish more and more. It is this rotation of love and service that has been the heartbeat of our Table on the Green dinner service. But would this “Perichoresis” term really help kick off a dinner church?
Two years later our dinner church service of Table on the Green is alive, rotating, and kicking. Today we are preparing our third year of Table on the Green meetings. The past two years of continuing love rotation really supported participants to grow and flourish in their personal lives, have been amazing experiences of faith and community. And new ideas in the spirit of our dinner church (food justice, spiritual food, food outreach) keep emerging and reflect the energy of our Table on the Green community.
And attendance? To boost attendance, our Table on the Green team has already been working on some marketing, with a video compiled by our photographer Tony Bacewicz. But the numbers are there: with a high of 45 and low of 16, the average has been 29. As it turns out, attendance is comparable to the service at the dinner church parish, St. Lydia’s in NYC. In short, our Table on the Green service is a blessing in many ways.
Maybe the “Perichoresis” movement of rotating love has more to offer to our faith life than the term initially conveys. Certainly, Table on the Green has taken “pericho” to heart. In fact, many people at our church practice this serving love so often. It is such a blessing to be part of Trinity. I wish you all a Happy Trinity Sunday and joyful rotating love service.
With special thanks to our Table on the Green leaders: Zack Nyein (2014-15), Liesl Spitz (2015-16), and Kate McKey-Dunar (2016-17) and all the musicians and leaders who have made this Perichoresis experience such powerful faith and community events.