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Bring Your Gifts To The Table


On April 5, 2016, L’Arche Greater Washinton, D.C. gathered at the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel to host our annual Heart of L’Arche Breakfast. This reflection was shared as a welcome to our breakfast. The theme of the 2016 Heart of L’Arche Breakfast was “Bring Your Gifts to the Table.”


This morning’s theme is Bring your gifts to the table. Our founder, Jean Vanier says, “Using our gifts is building community. We all need each other’s gifts. We must encourage their growth and our fidelity to them. Some have the gift of creating an atmosphere which brings joy…others have the gift of discerning what people need and of supporting them…Others have the gift of welcome. Each person has a gift to use for the good and growth of all.”

Our community member, Johnny, is one of the most generous people I have ever met. He has taught me so much about sharing one’s gifts freely and abundantly. Johnny isn’t here this morning, but said that I could share a story with you. Some of you may be familiar with Catholic Relief Service’s rice bowls. They are little cardboard boxes handed out at church at the beginning of Lent. You collect your spare change all through Lent, and then at Easter you bring your donations back to church. Last year, Johnny got his little box from church, and immediately brought it home and filled it with the pennies that he had painstakingly been collecting. The following Sunday, Johnny brought his full box with him, and placed it in the collection basket. No one knew what to do with it! Everyone else takes a month and a half to fill it, but Johnny heard the request for help, and knew that he needed to do everything he could to help, immediately. His generous spirit is not just with his pennies. If you have been welcomed into Ontario House, you have probably been prayed over by this generous, generous man.

In L’Arche, we spend a lot of time naming the giftedness in each other. And we believe with all our hearts that it is not just that every person’s gifts are welcomed at the table, we believe that every person’s gifts are necessary at the table. My prayer this morning is that each person here knows how gifted they are, and that they bring those gifts to the table.


Please celebrate with us by visiting our existing homes or sharing a gift with us of yourselves. You can also make a financial gift to help support all of our current homes.

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