Archive for the ‘Notes from the Pastor’ Category

A Pastoral Response to Fear and Ebola

When I was young, a distant cousin was convinced that Skylab, falling out of orbit, would fall on her home and kill her. The threat was not real, but her fear was. It changed her behavior for several weeks, making her world a small and threatening place. On 9/11, I walked from lower Manhattan, back […]

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A Labor Day Message from the Pastor

The summer, at least the no-school go-to-the-beach part of it, is drawing to a close, with one last hurrah of barbeques and parties. The forecast is looking good, and I expect to see many of you out and about during the long weekend, not to mention on Sunday morning, where we will bring our four-week […]

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In times Such As This: A Message from the Pastor

Another week, another mass shooting. In a country where it is extremely difficult to get mental health care, but relatively easy to obtain a weapon of mass murder, we should not be surprised. We grieve for those lost this morning at the Washington Navy Yard, even as we continue to pray for a sane solution […]

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A Note from the Pastor

I had two calls between the gate and baggage claim yesterday. The first was Josh letting me know that Tony was rushing to Iowa. The second was my mother, letting me know of the terrorist attack in Boston. As you may remember, I attended divinity school in the area, and have many friends still living, […]

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9/11 Memorial

Last night I was honored to open our community’s service of remembrance on the Common Ground. Thinking of the Hebrew tradition’s use of numbers, I delivered this prayer: A Prayer of Numbers   One idea formed in hatred Nineteen men who boarded planes on a September morning Four acts of unspeakable violence Flung like stones […]

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A Note from the Pastor

It has been a stunningly busy summer, as one opportunity after another presented itself to our church leadership. As much as we’ve gotten done, there is more to come. In the coming weeks you will receive an online survey to help us identify small groups for our Fall program as well as an online Readiness […]

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Summertime, and the livin’s easy

We live in a culture that promotes a self-centered attitude, a consumer mentality in which even our relationships are measured by “what’s in it for me?” This “anything goes” message can be seen in last year’s film “Hall Pass,” in which men in struggling marriages are given permission to break covenant, to cheat on their […]

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The Lord’s Prayer

Did you know: ~that there are two versions of the Lord’s Prayer. The Matthew version (6:9-13) is most frequently used, though many scholars believe the text in Luke (11:2-4) to be more authentic?   ~that many suspect Jesus was bilingual, but that we have no texts preserving the language he would have spoken with the […]

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Moving the Furniture

In the United Church of Christ tradition, we place an emphasis on the table fellowship, radically welcoming and transforming. This is very different from some traditions which emphasize sacrifice. Therefore, we have a communion table rather than an altar, even if some of us (including me!) often slip into old vocabulary.   Some have asked […]

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On being 2/3 Universalist

It is not uncommon for folks, on learning that I am a Christian minister, to say to me something like this: “Well, all paths lead to the same place.” I usually politely nod, move on to other topics. But I don’t really believe it. As we begin our three week sermon series on “Lessons Learned […]

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A Monday Update

Nancy continues on Grand Jury duty this week… thanks to Fran, Gail and Sue for volunteering to provide office coverage! There was a special request that I get the New Year’s Day homily online. That as well as yesterday’s sermon, are now online at my blog… link at the bottom of the Home page… The […]

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A Note from the Pastor: [alt]worship

Since the beginning of September we have been experimenting with new worship tools and styles, with the intention of eventually creating a contemporary [alt]worship to compliment our current offerings. We’ve learned some things that work, some not so much. Expect the launch of this new alternative worship opportunity in the coming weeks.

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