Beloved, you do faithfully whatever you do for the friends, even though they are strangers to you; they have testified to your love before the church. You will do well to send them on in a manner worthy of God; for they began their journey for the sake of Christ, accepting no support from non-believers. Therefore we ought to support such people, so that we may become co-workers with the truth.
(Lectionary, New Revised Standard Version)
Shortly after being priested in 1994 I was appointed as the Vicar of three parishes in Worcestershire. Since women had only been priested that year in the UK I wasn't quite sure what to expect, although my experience as a minor canon of Worcester cathedral had been fairly good after a rocky start. What I had not expected was to be inundated with fresh fruit and vegetables, and boxes of food for the family. The three congregations made us so welcome. It was so wonderful, and I've never forgotten it. I soon learnt that this was one of their strengths, for two of the parishes had a "sink fund" which I could use to help those in need in the parish.
In our reading today from the tiny third Epistle of John he is writing to Gaius and his congregation, who have welcomed travelling Christians and fed and housed them, sharing from their own resources. Many of these visitors would have been travelling teachers or missionaries, and as well as giving thanks John commends them because the visitors will not need to rely on non-believers for support. Christians ought to support those who work to spread the gospel.
So I would like to thank all of you who have helped your clergy in their work, through your prayers, your talents, or financially, and encourage you to keep on supporting these hard-pressed workers.
we thank you for Your generosity to us,
and for Your support of all our Church leaders.
Help us to be as generous to them
in our prayers, our time, our talents
and never to forget that they need our support
as much as we need their support.
Here are some prayers for your clergy/pastors/ministers/vicars/priests (whatever name you use!):
If you know they need help in some way most Christian denominations do have help available, and there are a number of charities that will help. I have given here information for the CofE, but Methodist, Baptist, Catholic also have help available, and you can look them up on line.