The Paradox newsletter – June, 2011

From the Pastor…

Yours the soil that holds the seed, you give warmth and moisture, too. Sprouting blossoms, crops and buds, trees and plants: the season’s signs that you make all things new. (Worship hymnal #554)

In the season of Easter, we hear stories of post-resurrection appearances of Jesus.  As we move towards Pentecost, and the “Time of the Church,” we hear of Jesus’ Ascension and the Spirit coming among Jesus’ followers to move them, encourage them, and guide them as they carry on with the mission of Christ in the world.

Many of our biblical stories, and our traditions in the church, use the words and images where God will “make all things new.”  It seems to me, though, that while we may engage in talk of becoming something new, we hold fast to the things we’ve always known – things that are perhaps out-dated.

Do we fear what the unknown might be?  Can we dive in to something new with enthusiasm for the mystery of what we might become?  Can we give of ourselves, even as we may feel like we aren’t holding the cards?

The image of a seed is appropriate in this season of planting and growing.  We hear Jesus use this image in John’s gospel: “unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (12:24).

No one knows what the future holds.  We may think we can tell, but we really don’t know.  Committing to journey together is an act of faith in itself!  And it’s no easy task discerning where the Spirit is leading us – each individually, or corporately.

But we’re called to make the effort!  We’re called to invest ourselves in endeavours that hold up neighbour and creation, even as it may mean some cost to us.  Give yourself to the community more often!  Engage in this season of making all things new!  -Pastor Tyler Gingrich

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THANK YOU…

– to Paul, Karen, and Jesse for service on All Saints’ Advisory committee

– to Jack for keeping our finances in order

– to Myrle and Paul for the delicious soup on Souper Sunday!

– to Karen for graciously driving regular carpools for our Saints

– to Melissa for organizing beautiful music!

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Prophetic Words for our Day

When most of us remember John F. Kenndy’s words, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” we don’t think about paying taxes. Yet the practice of giving a portion of one’s income or wealth to support government expenses and services is a practice as old as civilization itself. Governments perform certain tasks that benefit the whole community, usually tasks that are viewed as important to the health, safety, and well-being of their citizens. These expenses must be paid for somehow, and the privilege of self-governance in a democracy comes with the responsibility of contributing financially to support the common good. […]

As Christians who are concerned about the health and well-being of our communities, the global human community at large, and the life and health of all of God’s creation, when it comes to thinking about issues of taxes and federal spending, the question is: does our national budget reflect the values that are truly important to progressive Christians? As we think about taxes, tax policy, and federal spending, we must ask ourselves what we value most. If we value safe and healthy communities, clean rivers and streams, and literacy and job training for our citizens, then we need budget priorities that reflect these issues. […]

The basic foundation of the social fabric that holds Christian life together is the idea of covenant. Within biblical theology, a covenant is a binding agreement between two parties that is usually initiated by God with individuals (Noah, Abraham, David) or with groups (covenant with creation after the flood, Sinai covenant made with the Hebrew people). The making of a covenant signifies something more important than a simple contractual agreement between two parties. It signifies the initiation and development of a binding social relationship between God and the covenant people that is marked by loyalty and a concern for mutual well-being and right relationships between the members of the covenant community, even when the members are unfaithful or break the covenant. The covenant relationship between God and Israel formed the foundation for moral action and accountability for the Hebrew people and Christians understand the actions and teachings of Jesus as a continuation of the covenant relationship between God and God’s people.

(Rebecca Todd Peters, ‘For Funding Our Values,” in To Do Justice, pp.118-124)

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Seen on bumper sticker:

“When Jesus said ‘Love your enemies,’ I think he probably meant don’t kill them.”

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Looking to the Summer: beginning July 6

 We meet Wednesday evenings for our weekly community gathering – 7pm

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Our Second, Annual “First Supper”

~ Community BBQ ~

Sunday afternoon, June 26, 2011

See our calendar page for programming this month!

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Worship Leaders in June

DATE

LECTOR HOST LITURGIST

Thurs., June 2 (Ascension Day)

 

x x x x

Czeto, Whiteman, Westereng  

x x x x

June 5

Jesse W Wilkison Karen

June 12

     

June 19 (Souper Sunday)

 

x x x x

Gingrich /  

x x x x

June 26

  BBQ (potluck) Myrle
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Posted on June 1, 2011, in The Paradox - monthly newsletter. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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