Peoples Long Silenced

      The words of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A) Brief Statement of Faith seem especially relevant in these days of pandemic and politics.  The Brief Statement contains beautiful sentences about peace and hope, and an elegant reprise of the work of the Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer. I’ve been thinking about this part of the statement a lot lately: In … Read More

Good Books About the Good Book

Our colleague, David Crowley,  chaplain at Peabody Retirement Center in North Manchester, has recently published/updated two of his informative and helpful books. Prophets in a Minor Key: The Book of the Twelve,  is a series of bible studies on the “minor” prophets. (They’re minor because they’re shorter books, not less important.) Crowley shows us that they’re a rich source of … Read More

The Antidote Called Yes

  Our granddaughter, Eleanor, will turn two at the end of October. She’s curious and playful and loves to make others laugh. She’s empathetic, musical, and generally fearless. Ella loves books, trucks and her dog, George.  That’s just the beginning of the list of what and who Ella loves. Like most people I know, she gets hangry and sometimes cranky, … Read More

From the Bottom of My Heart

The year was 1976 and Stevie Wonder’s album, Songs in the Key of Life, was at the top of the charts. I was a seventeen year old, beginning college in Boston. I played it ALL the time.  It was the soundtrack of my freshman year. I play his music in the fall because it evokes some wonderful memories. I’ve been … Read More

More fun reading!

    A good friend of mine recently admitted that he has found reading to be challenging in the season of Covid. I expect that weariness, distraction, and other challenges are contributors. I inquired in a prior God Calls article about books you have enjoyed in recent months.                          … Read More

Every Day’s a School Day: What We’re Learning in a Global Pandemic Part 3

Every Day’s a School Day: What We’re Learning in a Global Pandemic Part Three   The leaders of the Presbytery of Wabash Valley are without a doubt some of the most creative, thoughtful and resilient people who are working well to maintain worship, mission, pastoral care and visionary leadership in this time.  I asked a number of ruling elders and … Read More

If I had to choose…

Choosing a favorite book is like asking me if I have a favorite child, or when I was a pastor, if I had a favorite church member.  Nope. Not happening. Can’t do it. I’ve written before that books have always been this only child’s siblings. I read a lot and I read widely. I guess you’d say that I have … Read More

Every Day’s a School Day: What a global pandemic is teaching us (part 2)

I emailed and asked our congregational or presbytery leaders just one question: “What are you learning in this season?” I was thrilled to receive so many responses. Part one of this series was about what our leaders have been learning about technology and its power to connect us and confound us. As one who watches multiple services from around the … Read More

Every Day’s a School Day: What Ministry in a Global Pandemic is Teaching Us

Part One: Technology I have regular, daily conversations with church leaders who are finding their way in this unusual and challenging time.  Most of them cite how hard it is to know if the decisions they are making with their sessions and others are the right ones. Most of them find the wide range of opinions about opening or closing … Read More

Tikkun Olam

In Jewish teachings,  the Hebrew words tikkun olam signify any activity that improves the world, bringing it closer to the harmonious state for which it was created. I think, literally, the Hebrew means “the healing of the world.” Imagine that, for just a minute.  Imagine making choices, big and small, all day long, that would improve our little corner of … Read More