This morning at church, things are what they are on most Sundays. We had about 15 people who sang, prayed and listened to the sermon. We talked about making sandwiches for the homeless in a few weeks time. But something unusual did happen today. For whatever reason, an elderly woman was dropped off at 9AM for the service held by a church that rents our space. Their worship service was at 11. The woman used a wheelchair. And because our heater is on the blink, the church was cold, causing her to shiver. The congregants fretted about leaving this woman … Continue reading The Church for Today (and not 1955)
A few years ago, I was at a local gathering of Disciples (my denomination) in Minnesota. It was a good event overall, a time when our small tribe could gather to worship and fellowship. Somewhere early in the event, there was a slide that showed all of the Disciple congregations in Minnesota that no longer exist. The speaker wanted us to honor the work that these former faith communities did and I was in agreement. They had for a season, been a small example of God’s kingdom. As much as I wanted to honor these congregations, I also felt a … Continue reading Praying for Revival (I Think)…
First Christian Church of St. Paul is looking for the curious, the energetic, the adventurous and others who are interested in relaunching this Mainline Protestant congregation as well as launching a preaching point somewhere in the St.Paul area. The Re-Launch/Launch Team is the group of people who are simply saying I want to be a part of what God is doing in and through this church. It’s a group of people willing to walk with those already here and see what God is doing. You don’t need any special gifts or skills but an attitude that says I will do … Continue reading Volunteers Needed: Church Launch/Re-Launch Team
One of the things that my denomination, the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is trying to do better is helping people understand the context in which they are to be church. An initiative, the Landscape for Mission has come out that helps people explain the changing society that we find ourselves in and insight on what we can do. I like the production value and I like that the four videos tell some hard truths about the denomination, something that a number of Disciples refuse to admit. Where I think it falls short is in the area of theology. I … Continue reading The Landscape for Mission (and Theology)
For the last few months, I’ve been following a blog called Via Media Methodists. The purpose of VMM is: 1.”To offer an alternative beyond the current polarization in The United Methodist Church; 2. To raise the level of discourse within The United Methodist Church; and 3. To practice what we preach.” After a few bit of chatter with one of VMM’s curators, Drew McIntrye, he suggested I write a post about my own tradition. I wrote the blog post and it now appears on the blog. Please read it when have the chance. Fellow Disciples pastor Brian Morse was able … Continue reading What’s Missing?
This past week, the Presbyterian Church (USA) meeting in Detroit, approved pastors being able to marry same sex partners in states where same sex marriage is legal. According to Presbyterian polity, it still has to get the approval of the majority of presbyteries (there are 172) before it becomes the law. Judging Facebook and Twitter there were a lot of comments about how good this is and I agree with them. But will this action, coupled with the approval of non celibate gays to become ordained a few years ago save the Presbyterian Church? Will it save any church? I … Continue reading Why Being Nice to The Gays Won’t Save Your Church*
The following is something I wrote on the First Christian website. As some of you know, First-St. Paul is down to a few faithful members. We are starting to venture forth into the community, but it would by helpful if we had a few more people. Share this with your friends. To contact me, go to the bottom of this post. First Christian Church of St. Paul is looking for the curious, the energetic, the adventurous and others who are interested in relaunching this congregation. First Christian is a 132-year old congregation. The congregation is affiliated with the Christian Church … Continue reading Work with a Church Rising from the Ashes in Minnesota