Church: Recovery Church UMC
District: Twin Cities
Submitted by: Pastor Brian Sojourner
“I believe God is riding with me,” says Mavis Fry, an avid motorcyclist. “I feel more aware of my surroundings and I ride more safely.”
Fry is talking about why she chose to participate in the first-ever biker blessing at The Recovery Church in St. Paul, which took place in mid-July.
Members of the church realized that a large number of them were passionate about riding motorcycles. Because of the risks associated with their hobby, they came up with the idea for the event so that people could pray for their safety.
Pastor Brian Sojourner thought it was a great idea, seeing as so many of them shared this pastime. About 70 bikers showed up with their bikes to be blessed. Sojourner says the blessing is “a sign-act of the Triune God’s means of grace. In the liturgy, we prayed together, asking God’s blessing.”
Then, each individual received a pastoral prayer of blessing using water and oil as a means to express and convey the Triune God’s grace.
“As the pastor of The Recovery Church, I see the biker blessing as God’s radical grace and fulfilling our practice of radical hospitality at this church,” says Sojourner.
“It felt so [personal] with the oil and water,” says Fry.
The Recovery Church saw a specific need within its community—for prayers for the many motorcyclists—and used it to come up with a new type of spiritual fulfillment for its members. The church hopes to make the blessing an annual summer event.
After the blessing, which followed a barbecue lunch at the church, motorcyclists enjoyed fellowship by taking a group ride to a biker hot spot in Diamond Bluff, Wisconsin.
The experience in a nutshell? “Awesome,” says Fry.
Learn more about The Recovery Church.
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church