As someone who was so involved a my home congregation, opinions on involvement with the church in my new environment varied greatly before my departure. Would I stay involved at UDLC? Go to church here? Go to an ELCA church here? Get involved in my new synod? Lose my attachment to church or God?
Well, I can say that being true to my faith and to myself is full of ups, downs, and surprises. The people at the lutheran university center (ELCA!!!) here are certainly friendly and welcoming; I've spent a few hours at the center for dinners, at service, and even at a Pirates game/OAR concert. But, to be honest, they aren't UDLC people. I'm not used to being the youngest, I'm not used to being new, and I'm not used to them as a group. Realistically, I feel blessed knowing that "ELCA people" exist just down the road, but I don't feel that establishing a new community here is essential to maintaining my relationship with God. I have me for that. I also have a book [An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown Taylor] from P. Dizzle that constantly surprises me. Some chapters have seemed to appear at exactly the right moments over the last few months, while other seem to be ones I should put aside for a few years before returning to them. Regardless, the practices Taylor alludes to are a definite stepping stone for me, and have brought on hours of reflection and "absently" staring out my 19th floor window. Reading each chapter allows me time to be alone and to be with God.
My faith and how I keep it are more personal experiences here, but I definitely haven't given up on the LUC crew just yet. Besides, it's in our Lutheran nature to call those who stop showing up, so it isn't even really an option ;)
p.s. GO FLYERS