One of the best things in my life is a small building in the Upper West Side of Manhattan that I discovered over three years ago when I haphazardly Googled “Presbyterian churches near me,” a couple weeks into moving to New York City.
West End Presbyterian Church is located on the same block as the apartment I was living in at the time and I found no reason not to scope it out. I first attended on the first Sunday in February 2016. The first Sunday of the month is the combined English and Spanish service. I know no Spanish.
I sat there mesmerized at the way the diverse congregation seamlessly danced between English and Spanish. After, I met the community there and was invited for coffee hour. I was hooked before I could say “Amen.”
I’ve been attending this church every Sunday since, getting more involved with the people and community there and falling more and more in love with the support and stability they provide.
Recently, I was thinking of another benefit to my adoptive family. They represent a diverse group of nationalities, languages, backgrounds, and ages. Today, I want to focus on that last one.
There is immense value in inter-generational friendships. The fact that I get to spend quality time with people each week who could be my parents or even grandparents is humbling. They also serve as an unintentional reality check. I can speed walk to church with my millennial problems rattling around my head and within moments of spending time with my community there, be reminded of the bigger picture.
Carve out intentional time this week to spend time with someone of a different generation, with someone whose first language isn’t the same as yours, who practices a different faith.
We grow when we surround ourselves with different perspectives and life views. And I will forever be grateful that I stumbled upon that at West End.