Month: September 2018

There are people in the world who believe that the Bible is boring. Some of them are taking a confirmation class right now; not at this church, of course, but somewhere. And to those people, I offer a counterpoint: the Book of Esther. For those of you who don’t remember this story, a summary: The Jews were conquered by the Babylonians and exiled from their homeland. Then the Babylonians were conquered by the Persians and, as we open our story, the Jews are living in exile in Persia. Due to some palace intrigue, the King of Persia does not…
Join First Congregational United Church of Christ for a workshop on cultural humility, the practice of approaching other people with an openness to learn and a willingness to reflect on your own assumptions, practices, and privilege! This workshop will be at First Congregational on October 3 at 6pm and presented by Dr. Chris Martin. Dr. Martin teaches across the social work spectrum specializing in teaching practice courses. Her areas of practice have been child welfare, child bereavement, youth homelessness, and domestic/sexual violence prevention and intervention. She is a licensed social worker in the state of Iowa and focuses her research on…
There are very few people in the world who will defend Pollyanna. It’s one of the things that makes my wife unique. She gets righteously angry about a few things, and one of them is the flagrant misinterpretation of this beloved children’s classic. If you don’t know the novel, it follows an orphan named Pollyanna, who moves to Beldingsville, Vermont, to live with her Aunt Polly. Now, Aunt Polly is not a pleasant person. And neither are many of the other residents of Beldingsville. But, in good early-twentieth-century children’s novel fashion, Pollyanna is going to change that. You see—and…
May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O God, my rock and my redeemer. Now and forever. When I was young, I learned a saying. You know it, too. Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me. And I can tell you something that I’m sure you already know: that saying isn’t true. It’s a lie. It’s a lie that we tell ourselves and our friends and our children when someone else is teasing them or insulting them or bullying them. It’s a comforting…
Last weekend, there were two funerals. I don’t know how many of you saw Aretha Franklin’s funeral. I didn’t watch it live, but I watched some of the eulogies and musical tributes on YouTube after it was over. And while there were a couple of rough spots, it was a good service. The music honored God and Aretha, and Jennifer Hudson can sing here any time she wants. The eulogies talked about Aretha’s art and about her work for justice, and Rev. Dr. Barber can preach here any times he wants. It honored the Queen of Soul and it…
“My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Look, there he stands behind our wall, gazing in the windows, looking through the lattice. My beloved speaks and says to me: ‘Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. The fig tree puts forth its figs and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my fair one,…

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Ash Wednesday (February 26)

Ashes to Go

Can't make it to worship? Join Pastor Chris in the church parking lot for ashes to go on Wednesday from noon to 1pm (weather permitting).

Dinner and Worship

Join us at DeWitt's United Methodist Church for a light dinner at 6pm and worship at 7pm.