Matawan United Methodist Church - Let us pray for you!
Thursday, June 20, 2019

Public Theology

The Christian Flag
There are two flags found in our sanctuary. On the left is the American flag, which we all know. But on the right is the Christian flag. You may not know this flag as well so here are some facts!
It was conceived at Brighton Chapel, Coney Island, New York, Sunday, September 26, 1897, and was presented in its present form the following Sunday by its originator.
The Christian flag is the only free flag in the world. It is different from every other flag, religious or secular, ancient or modern. It is uncontrolled, independent, and universal. Unlike all national flags and all denominational flags of various churches, it has no earthly bonds or allegiances. Christ and Christ alone is its Master. The Christian Flag is a flag designed to represent all of Christianity.
The flag has a white field, with a red Latin cross inside a blue canton.
The flag's most conspicuous symbol is the Christian cross, the most universal symbol for Christianity. The red color represents the blood of Christ.
The white field draws on symbolism throughout the Bible equating white clothes with purity and forgiveness. People who have been "washed white as snow" in the Bible have been cleansed from their sins..
The symbolism behind the blue canton has been interpreted to represent Heaven, truth, or the Christian sacrament of Baptism in water.
Today the Christian flag is one of the oldest unchanged flags in the world. As it should be…just like our unchanging God!!
“I the Lord do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 
(Malachi 3:6)       
May God bless you with His wisdom,
“That Little Room”
You may have seen the communion steward coming in and out of “that little room” up behind and to the right of the altar. Or you have seen others going in that room to change candles, get flower arrangements or generally set things up on the altar.
So…what is “that little room”?
That little room is a part of church architecture called the Sacristy. The Sacristy may have different functions in different churches, but typically it is a room in the church, where the vestments, church furnishings, sacred vessels, and other treasures are kept, and where the clergy meet and vest for the various ecclesiastical functions. At present the almost universal practice is to have the sacristy directly behind the main altar or at either side.
Sacristies usually have a sink for the washing of sacred vessels and linens. In some cases, this sink bypasses the main sewer system and drains directly into the ground so that no consecrated materials go into the sewer. 
The word Sacristy comes from the Latin sacristia, meaning "holy things."
At MUMC, the Sacristy is primarily used to store the communion vessels, candles, and other items associated with the altar setting. The Sacristy is also the place where the elements of communion are prepared.
“A tabernacle was set up. In its first room were the lampstand and the table with its consecrated bread; this was called the Holy Place.”
- Hebrews 9:2
May God bless you with His wisdom,