Recently, I was invited to preach at Madrona Grace Presbyterian Church, an open and affirming church up in Seattle, Washington. Unfortunately, when my husband got ill and needed to be hospitalized, I had to cancel my trip to Madrona at the last minute. In anticipation of my time at Madrona Grace, I had prepared a sermon and I want to share it with you here as the second part in a series of posts on the Biblical roots of why I stay in the Presbyterian Church (USA).
I believe that one way Christ as our unity becomes real in this world is through our service to the needy. It’s something I’ve heard often from our young people in the church, with their passionate desire for us all to move beyond our disagreements and simply get to work helping others.
In the spring and summer of this year, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted on and then made a historical change in policy; one that allows openly lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) members to become ordained ministers, elders and deacons. In July, when the policy went into effect, no one knew exactly what the new world we were entering would look like. This weekend, we begin to see the joy and extraordinary gifts that our church will receive.
Toward the end of August, Hunter Farrell, the director of Presbyterian World Mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) shared with the church that the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico has taken official action to sever connection with the PCUSA.
“Reflecting God’s Heart” was the theme of the More Light Presbyterians’ national conference held last weekend in Third Presbyterian Church in Rochester, NY. From start to finish, the worship, receptions, meals, workshops and evening movie time were all geared to fulfill the prayer from the last verse of the poem of our 17th century Pilgrim ancestor, John Robinson: “Enlarge, expand all Christian souls to comprehend your love.”
The way I see it, for the last thirty years, our leaders have focused not on what Christ calls us all to do, but on that which divides us. We’ve focused not on including and welcoming diversity in theology and worldly condition, but on sequestering into our own theological corners and enforcing exclusionary rules.
This week, two Presbyterian groups will be looking for solutions that will comfort conservative Presbyterians who are anxious about the church, and today, I write with a solution that I hope they consider.
I have had only two encounters with Rev. Joan Gray, Moderator of the 217th General Assembly (2006-2008) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Both of them have been memorable and helpful to me in understanding how to be a Christian and a Presbyterian.
Christ has no body on earth but ours; Ours are the only hands which Christ can use to work, Ours are the only feet with which Christ can go about the world, Ours are the only eyes through which Christ’s compassion can shine forth upon a troubled world. Christ has no body on earth now […]
11/20 Jesus once said, “You always have the poor with you (Mt 26:11, Mk 14:7).” This teaching, which has always been somewhat of a mystery to me, has been very much on my mind. This week I have been participating in the November Rainbow Corps visit to New Orleans sponsored each year by More Light […]