Here at the Cross – Nov. 20, 2016

Mellissa speaking at RMC Nov. 20, 2016On this Christ the King Sunday Melissa spoke of Jesus’ crucifixion, the very first Christian community and the radical example of our Anabaptist forebears. The scripture texts were from Jeremiah 23:1-6 and Luke 23:33-43.

Many church leaders have said, in response to the recent political machinations, “God is in control.” However, that does not mean that everything will be all right. We are called into a Christian community into which not everything is all right. We are called to transform ourselves into a community of people so dangerous that we can not be allowed to exist.

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God leaves everything…to pursue God’s beloved – Oct. 9, 2016

Melissa preachnig at RMC on Oct. 9, 2016Melissa spoke from 2 Kings 5:1-14 and Luke 17:11-19, focusing on the story in 2 Kings about Naaman being healed of his skin disease after hearing about God’s prophet Elisha from a little servant girl.

We don’t see things as they are; we see them as we are. God sees things as God is, and when God sees you…God sees a beloved.

 

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Increase our faith – Oct. 2, 2016

Melissa Florer-Bixler speaking on Sept. 18, 2016Melissa spoke from Luke 17:5-10 and Psalm 37:1-9. She envisioned Jesus telling the disciples, “Faith isn’t something you get; it isn’t a form of currency to be increased. Faith is a particular disposition in the world.”  A disposition of faith means putting our bodies next to the bodies of others, particularly the bodies of those who are most vulnerable. How do we make space for anger–such as the anger of those who continue to face oppression–without hatred?

Today was also World Communion Sunday. A time to break bread together, but also a time to remember the oppression faced by so many of our sisters and brothers throughout the world.

 

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Rich in Good Works – Sept. 25, 2016

daryl-byler-150Daryl Byler, executive director of Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice & Peacebuilding, preached from the lectionary readings of Amos 6:1,4-7, I Timothy 6:6-10,17-19 and Luke 16:19-31.  The readings all talk about wealth. They can be a bit unsettling since by most global measures most of us fit into the category of being wealthy. What is our responsibility when there are so many disparities here in the U.S., but even more so world-wide? Daryl used a number of slides to illustrate his sermon and provide some suggestions.

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A life of debt, the bonds of love – Sept. 18, 2016

Melissa Florer-Bixler speaking on Sept. 18, 2016Melissa spoke from “the slimiest story in the New Testament,” Luke 16:1-13, the parable of the dishonest manager. This manager makes some mischief. Throughout the Gospel of Luke the good news is the reversing of social boundaries, boundaries maintained by economic disparity. What if Jesus’ followers actually knew how the system worked, and what if they caused some mischief?

 

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Life altering encounters – Aug. 14, 2016

Drawing from Luke 7:11-17 and I Corinthians 12:12-26, as well as a TED talk given by Drew Dudley, Stan reminds us that our words and actions–individually and collectively as the embodiment of Christ in our world–matter.  Even when we may not be aware of it we are impacted by and have an impact on others, sometimes through chance encounters, but more often through our ongoing encounters in community.

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