From the Rev: Remembering Martin
This past Tuesday, November 11, was Veterans Day, but it also serves as the feast day for the patron Saint Martin of Tours. St. Martin has a special place in the heart for the for me personally and for the ministry of CrossTraining. If you don’t know the story, Martin was a soldier in the Roman army, following in the footsteps of his father. One day, outside the city gates of Amiens in France he met a beggar who was naked and out in the cold. As the story goes, Martin cut his cloak in half and clothed the beggar half. Later that night, resting with his garrisoned troops in the city, he had a vision of Jesus Christ appearing before him and saying,
Martin you have clothed me with this cloak.
According to tradition, Martin understood Jesus to be calling him to a devoted life as a Christian follower. He left his military commission and led a monastic lifestyle, eventually becoming Bishop of Tours. His disciples were known for working and ministering in converted pagan shrines and telling people about the love of Jesus. Martin’s disciples eventually became known by Martin’s famous cloak. The word “cappella” is where we derive the word for chapel and chaplain. Martin and his disciples were known for being “keepers of the sacred” – not that the cloak was sacred, but the act of sharing the cloak with someone in need was sacred.
As I continue in this work of serving as a chaplain in the world of sport, there are many times of “sharing the cloak” with a person in need – sometimes it was in leading a funeral service, other times in offering a listening ear, some times in simply being with someone in the midst of their pain.
Today, let me encourage you to share your cloak with someone in need, wherever you are. You might be on your way into the city and you see someone that needs food. You might be at work and a co-worker has just experienced a loss in their life. You might have a neighbor or friend who are on the brink of devastation. Take a moment to share and cover them in their need. They will see the light of Jesus in the thing that you do, and who knows, maybe even Jesus will appear to you and remind you that when you do these things to the least of these…you do it unto him.
Rev. Brad Kenney