When a new pastor arrived at a small rural parish, she found the church's self-image was fragile. Soon she ummasked a clue to negative attitudes. Grandmothers, who were the young mothers of large families during the 1950s, met her inquiries about the church school with apology. They compared everything to the by-gone era.
Teachers tended to dismiss a church school class if only two or three came on a Sunday morning. Preparers of programs for men's and women's meetings complained of effort expended and suggested that it was wasted on so few.
Thomas Willadsen Mary Austin Christopher Keating Dean Feldmeyer Ron Love George Reed Bethany Peerbolte
For January 20, 2018:
God Activates by Tom Willadsen — Perhaps God wants us to delight in each other and in the magnitude and depth of divine love. Perhaps the Lord wants to activate our gifts of the Spirit, to use them for the common good.
We are all intimately connected as one body in Jesus. Isaiah celebrates our intimate union with our creator, describing us as the joyful bride of God. Though there had been alienation and rejection from both sides in the past, the prophet describes us as God’s delight. That connection is also emphasized in Paul’s oddly graphic description of church folks as body parts — we need each other because we are not a living, breathing body if we are somehow separated.
When Jesus visited a wedding at Cana in Galilee, he showed that human disappointments matter to him and that he would be prepared to redeem them. This is a story about a young girl's bitter disappointment when she became a bridesmaid.