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'Community' Tagged Posts

'Community' Tagged Posts

Community in Otherness

Yesterday, I had the great fortune of being part of a small group conversation with some other clergy folks in our local area. In our conversation, we were exploring the question of what the role of our institutions (churches, temples, etc) is in the current context of the United States and, perhaps more importantly, in the current context of the state of Arizona. We were attempting to discern the role that each of us has to play within our respective…

Finding Hope in Exile

As I sit down to write this week’s reflection, I am struck by one overwhelming feeling: exhaustion. The year that we are in has been and continues to be a year that has offered little in the way of rejuvenation. It has been a year of continuous challenges, and it has been a year in which we have had to do things so very differently. On top of all of that, we find ourselves inside a moment of further uncertainty…

The Distress of Change

Change is, in a word, hard. It is hard especially when we feel like we don’t have a whole lot of control over the change that is happening. And it gets even harder when those things upon which we have relied are themselves changing. I am not sure about you, but I have certainly felt that way over the last several months. The very things that were the touchstones of my week began to shift underneath my feet. Gathering together…

Living the Incarnation

It’s hard to believe that we are returning to in-person worship on Sunday. It has been such a long time since we have been able to worship together, to break bread together, to find Christ together. It has been a time of fasting for us as we have worshiped by way of online technology and have gone without Holy Eucharist for nearly seven months. The fast has invited us to dive a little more deeply into our personal relationship with…

Epiphany’s Covenant of Care

So, now we know a new schedule for the fall, and we have learned a little bit about how to get tickets for in-person worship services. But how will we care for each other when we gather in-person? This is where our covenant of care comes into the picture.  If you remember your Bible stories, you might remember that there are several covenants that God makes at different times. The first covenant is with Noah, and it reflects God’s commitment…

Making Reservations for In-person Worship

It is exciting that we are looking at the possibility of returning to in-person worship at Church of the Epiphany! We are all excited about the possibility of seeing sisters and brothers in Christ that we have not seen at church since March.  As we prepare for a return to in-person worship, we are also adopting a new practice: registering for a worship service in advance. The reason we are doing this is to help us maintain limits on attendance…

Preparing for In-Person Worship: A New Sunday Schedule

In a few short weeks, Church of the Epiphany-Tempe will be making a return to in-person worship with limits on attendance and following other safety practices during a time of pandemic. It also means that we have to re-think our Sunday schedule in order to create room for things like formation classes (formerly known as Sunday school)!  Thus, beginning on September 13, we will make a shift to a new schedule to lay the foundation for the remainder of the…

Life in the Now

All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. Acts 2:44-45 NRSV A few weeks ago, the vestry voted to launch a special giving campaign called Foundations of the Apostles and Prophets. (I hasten to add that we have received just over $3,000 through this campaign thus far.) The effort of the campaign is pitched as one way that our parish…

Being the Church in Anxious Times

Over the last several days, the news around COVID-19, novel coronavirus, has been a shifting landscape in our country. In addition to the news from around the world, we have seen communities in the United States that have had to respond to a spreading number of cases, and we have seen major institutions, like Arizona State University, take actions to help prevent the spread of the virus in the areas they serve. As this news has spread, it is normal…

The Conversation of Invitation

When we seek to use conversation as a model of leadership in community, it is important to understand the kind of community that we are seek to create. Conversation is flowing and only unfolds because of the presence of multiple voices in the room. It is an act that is, by its very nature, restorative to relationship. To create conversation is to issue an invitation, either formally or informally, for others to participate. It is to create an open space…

Hearing What the Spirit says to the Churches…

One of the things that is great about the advent of computer technology is that it can have a drastic impact on doing Biblical research. For example, if you wanted to search for a word throughout scripture to see how many times it appears, the context in which it appears, and how the use of the word changes over time, you can now purchase Bible software that allows you to do just that! In the days of yesteryear, you would…