Today's readings share one common thrust. Each in its own context sheds hope over the horizon of history. To a community under hardship and facing bleak prospects Haggai promises a new tomorrow of God's making. 2 Thessalonians is addressed to a congregation experiencing internal confusion and stress triggered by intruders promoting an escapist version of the gospel, probably some form of gnosticism. Call it Gospel Lite. The writer reminds his readers in his own way that cross and crown are inseparable; there are struggles to come but love's far-reaching victory is certain.
The word epiphany is from the Greek and refers to the experience of a sudden and amazing realization. Usually it’s applied to a scientific or philosophical/religious breakthrough, but it can apply in any situation in which a brilliant insight gives a person a different perspective on life or a problem s/he has been considering. For example, Archimedes’ famous shriek of “Eureka!” came as he was in the baths, contemplating yet again the difficulty of determining if a given mass would float.
Ron Love Mark Ellingsen Bob Ove Bonnie Bates Bill Thomas Frank Ramirez
Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10 Imagine a worship service, a sharing of scripture and interpretation, that went on from dawn until midday. How would you respond? In many of our mainline churches a worship service that last more than an hour risks negative comments to the pastor. “Worship was too long.” “I have other things to do today.” “Can’t you try to keep worship to an hour?”
Some time ago there was a series of programmes on BBC 2 on the recent history of the Catholic Church. The series was called "Absolute Truth", and one programme looked at Catholicism in the developing parts of the world. It studied the work of liberation theologians in Latin America, particularly Leonardo Boff and Oscar Romero.