What Is Mission First All About?

  At the 2015 General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Columbus, Ohio, those gathered heard about a new initiative being rolled out called Mission First.  Mission First seems to be a way to retool the denomination for the 21st century.  A central part of this initiative is to have Mission Gatherings in 2016.  My region is having its Mission Gathering later this month. While the website for Mission First has some background on the idea, a certain question keeps coming to the fore: what is this all about? I get that this is kind of a … Continue reading What Is Mission First All About?

First Comes Marriage, then Comes Grace

Well, it finally happened. After a decade or so of amendments, court challenges, referreudum and the like, same sex marriage is now legal accross the United States.  The 5-4 decision by the Supreme Court was a momentous day for many LGBT Americans, myself included. Of course, this news is personal for me.  Like a lot of gay couples, I’ve had to say my wedding vows twice.  The first time was at my church wedding in 2007.  Then in 2013 same sex marriage became legal in Minnesota, and on Labor Day 2013, my husband Daniel and I had our civic wedding. … Continue reading First Comes Marriage, then Comes Grace

Sermon: Getting God’s Goat

Start Play Matthew 25:31–46 | Fifth Sunday of Lent | March 22, 2015 | First Christian Church | Mahtomedi, MN | Dennis Sanders, preaching   “Not all the sheep are good all of the time. Not all of the goats are bad all of the time. We are sometimes sheep, giving of ourselves to help our neighbor and we are sometimes goats, shutting ourselves from the cares of the world. We never really know who is a sheep or who is a goat even if we think we do.” Read the Sermon Text. Continue reading Sermon: Getting God’s Goat

What Are We Being Inclusive For?

There has been something that has been bothering me for a while.  Usually when people start talking about gay ordination or same-sex marriage, someone on the pro side will say something to the effect: “Jesus was inclusive,” or “Jesus welcomed everybody.” Now, I’m all for welcoming people into our churches in the way that Jesus did.  I’ve been fighting for LGBT inclusion in the church for years.  But when someone says something like the sentences above, I get a weird feeling, like something isn’t right. Recently, after reading a blog post, I finally understood what was bothering me.  In the … Continue reading What Are We Being Inclusive For?

Praying for Revival (I Think)…

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)…

Sermon: Make Me Wanna Holler

Habakkuk 1:1–4, 2:2–4 and 3:17–19 First Sunday in Advent November 30, 2014 First Christian Church Mahtomedi, MN My dad was always concerned whenever I did something with one my white female friends. I never really understood what was the deal. I had no interest in dating them, just hanging out with them. I went to a Catholic high school in Michigan that was predominantly white and it so happened that a lot of the people I knew were white women. A few years out of high school, I started to understand what Dad was getting at. My friend Cherie and … Continue reading Sermon: Make Me Wanna Holler