Epistle Article, February 16, 2014

So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

In my last newsletter article I promised to share some ideas that I have borrowed from Dan Glover and Claudia Lavy in a presentation I attended at a Bishop’s retreat.  In their book Deepening Your Effectiveness: Restructuring the Local Church for Life Transformation, Glover and Lavy relate: Read more…



Epistle Article January 26, 2014

So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

 

Just last week marked my one year anniversary as pastor of St. Paul’s.  And before I could even catch my breath, we are well into our second year together.  I am hopeful that with every New Year comes the promise of better days ahead.  Read more…



Epistle Article January 12, 2014

You are witnesses, and God also, how pure, upright, and blameless our conduct was toward you believers.

(1 Thessalonians 2:10)

             I have a confession to make: preachers, like all humans, sometimes forget things. In the midst of the daily tasks of ministry, we can forget the weighty issues that matter. Read more…



Epistle Article, December 22, 2013

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place this way.  When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit…an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:18-21)

 

As we approach Christmas, this most mysterious and emotionally satisfying season of the Christian year, the strangeness of it all strikes me once again.  Read more…



Epistle Article December 8, 2013

Come, thou long-expected Jesus, born to set thy people free;

From our fears and sins release us, let us find our rest in thee.

Israel’s strength and consolation, hope of all the earth thou art;

Dear desire of every nation, joy of every longing heart. 

Charles Wesley, 1744

             We are in the season of Advent, the four Sundays before Christmas, in which we as Christ’s Church begin the celebration of the Christian Year.  Read more…



Epistle Article November 24, 2013

Yesterday I drove into a small Oklahoma town with a banner over the main road that read, “Seasons Greetings!”  It occurred to me that we are in a special time of the year in which holiday greetings seem to follow one after another: Happy Halloween; Happy Thanksgiving; Merry Christmas; Happy New Year!

Sometimes I wish the holidays were spread over the calendar more evenly, Read more…



Epistle Article, November 10, 2013

Praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord, O my soul!

I will praise the Lord as long as I live;

I will sing praises to my God all my

life long (Psalm 146:1-2).

 

A few years ago a fellow with another religious background tried to explain to me why he never used the word “God.”  Because DOG is GOD spelled backward, he reasoned that to refer to God as “God” was to belittle God.  Read more…



Epistle Article October 27, 2013

You know the old maxim: “The only thing you can count on is death and taxes.”  Death and Taxes–I want to add a third constant to our life – Change.  Our Church is a perfect example this past year.  There have been so many changes that it is hard to know where to begin.  We experienced a pastoral change.  We have updated our facilities with new doors, parking lot striping and additional lighting, among other improvements.  Read more…



Epistle Article October 13, 2013

The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught.  He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.  For many were coming and going and they had no leisure even to eat (Mark 6:30-31).

Can you relate?  I believe for most of us Fall is the busiest season of the year.  With school back in swing, choir resuming, Read more…



Epistle Article, July 14, 2013

The story is told of a little girl whose parents had taken her forward to receive Holy Communion.  Disappointed with the small piece of bread she was given to dip in the cup, the child cried loudly, “I want more!  I want more!”  While embarrassing her parents and amusing the pastor and congregation, this little girl’s cry accurately expresses the feelings of many contemporary United Methodist people.. Read more…