Pastor’s Letters

Finding One’s Place

In Sweetwater, Texas each year there is an event called The Rattlesnake Roundup. People go out to the countryside to capture all the rattlesnakes they can find. Like any kind of event like this, there are some strange categories for prizes. However, besides reducing the population of these poisonous snakes, they also milk the venom…

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What’s on your mind?

Preachers often preach “fire and brimstone” sermons. The most famous sermon of the First Great Awakening in America was entitled“Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” The Second Great Awakening made frequent use of the mourners’ bench where “sinners” in need of repentance were placed just below the preacher’s podium and they were supposed to…

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The Cancer of Hate

How do we respond to hate? Can those who hate be appeased, allayed or accepted for who they are? In his classic book on the psychology of social systems, Failure of Nerve, Ed Friedman used the physical systems of our bodies as an extended analogy of the different systems that make up human society. Friedman…

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Pastor’s Letter

If you grew up like me, you may struggle with the idea of pride as a good thing. I looked up the word recently in my old-fashioned dictionary. Five out of six definitions described pride as a positive thing. The first one, however, made it a synonym of arrogance, a false sense of superiority. For too long…

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Resurrection Living

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The entire month of May will be part of the Easter season this year. The understanding is that we cannot celebrate adequately nor fully convey the meaning of the Resurrection in just one day. The Easter season is seven weeks, ending with the celebration of Pentecost. Sometimes I struggle to find words that fully convey…

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Remembering Dust, Celebrating Life

At the Ash Wednesday Service I imposed ashes on foreheads using the traditional words, “ashes to ashes, dust to dust.” The next day I realized just how important it is to remember that we are dust when I was found unconscious on the sidewalk outside the church office. While I still do not have a…

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