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I just love this. We are truly all in this together and we need each other more than we can possibly know.Stay warm and peaceful

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I ran across this video in my inbox tonight after giving a talk to my Disciples of Christ in Community group on Love and working for the Kingdom of God.  I thought it appropriate. We were talking about Loving the way God loves as a means of pointing toward the new Creation that God is longing to bring upon the world this Christmas as has been the case for these last 2000 years and more.

May we dare stand by one another regardless of nationality, race, gender, sexual preference.  God has called us to the work of building a just Kingdom alongside the Divine and with all the people of the world.  Enjoy and stand by someone and ask them to stand by you and sing the same song to the world.

May there be peace on earth and may it begin with me standing with you.

—Warren

Here’s something I ran across on my travels through Twitterland. You can find more at http://www.g-dcast.com.

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Hey there.  Some of you might remember that I wrote an entry on the self same subject last month.  I did so thinking that I was falling behind in my commitment to talk about the MDGs.  I realized the next day that I was a month ahead, not late.  So…here we go again.

I made a commitment to an online friend the other day that I would blog about the MDGs (Millenium Development Goals) today.  Now to figure out what to say!

I’m only half kidding.  If you’re not aware of what the MDGs are here’s a brief overview courtesy of the United Nations which drafted these goals as a way of seeking to eliminate global development problems by attacking them at their roots:

We can be overwhelmed at the enormity of these development challenges if we bite off too big a hunk of them.  Maybe what we can do best is see where these challenges affect our own neighborhoods.  True, it may not be that we have stark examples of poverty, child mortality and all the rest down the street, but we would do well not to take for granted what we do have and be honest about what’s lacking locally.

Environmental sustainability begins in our homes and extends to our neighbors.

Universal primary education is often a sporadic reality for homeless families (Buy your Hope for Housing Grocery Cards at St. Luke’s!!!!)

HIV and malaria, well a mosquito net that will protect a child in a developing country costs about $10 and addresses 2 of the goals.  Think on that and Google a place to donate!

You’ll have loads of ideas if you just spend some time reflecting on what you can do.  If not try this link for the ONE Campaign where you can find out what One person can do to make a difference in the life of another and indeed in the life of the world.

Take some time today to think about what you CAN do, not about what you CAN’T do.  It’s hard work, but it’s really good work.

I made a commitment to an online friend the other day that I would blog about the MDGs (Millenium Development Goals) today.  Now to figure out what to say!

I’m only half kidding.  If you’re not aware of what the MDGs are here’s a brief overview courtesy of the United Nations which drafted these goals as a way of seeking to eliminate global development problems by attacking them at their roots:

We can be overwhelmed at the enormity of these development challenges if we bite off too big a hunk of them.  Maybe what we can do best is see where these challenges affect our own neighborhoods.  True, it may not be that we have stark examples of poverty, child mortality and all the rest down the street, but we would do well not to take for granted what we do have and be honest about what’s lacking locally.

Environmental sustainability begins in our homes and extends to our neighbors.

Universal primary education is often a sporadic reality for homeless families (Buy your Hope for Housing Grocery Cards at St. Luke’s!!!!)

HIV and malaria, well a mosquito net that will protect a child in a developing country costs about $10 and addresses 2 of the goals.  Think on that and Google a place to donate!

You’ll have loads of ideas if you just spend some time reflecting on what you can do.  If not try this link for the ONE Campaign where you can find out what One person can do to make a difference in the life of another and indeed in the life of the world.

Take some time today to think about what you CAN do, not about what you CAN’T do.  It’s hard work, but it’s really good work.

Happy Monday all!!!!

This text from Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) 39:11 concluded the Hebrew Scripture reading for the Feast of Bernard of Clairvaux, celebrated today throughout Christendom.

If he lives long, he will leave a name greater than a thousand, and if he goes to rest, it is enough for him.

Bernard is in many ways one of the fathers of modern monasticism. Born to privilege he abandoned it all in order to spend his considerable gifts in the passionate pursuit of establishing truly Christian communities. Though few of us today in full-time pastoral ministry are setting out to establish monasteries we are engaged in very similar endeavor to that of Bernard.

Bernard’s passion (often at the expense of sleep and other frivolous activities) for building the Kingdom through the establishment of praying communities ought to be what the leader of every congregation would do well to imitate. Bernard sensed that the traditions of Jesus and The Way were threatened by an increasingly hostile or at least indifferent secular reality. If we’re honest with ourselves, we live in a similar age, asking for the same kind of compulsive, passionate and thorough proclamation by the Gospel by communities of praying, serving, studying and compassionate followers of Jesus.

We may, none of us, live long enough or cast as long a shadow as Bernard to remembered more than a thousand, but should we spend even a few days chasing as passionately  the life of discipleship for ourselves and those whom we pastor as did Brother Bernard—that will be enough.

Thanks be to God for Bernard.

In July at St. Luke’s we had a series of sermons talking about the Kingdom of Heaven language in Matthew’s Gospel.  Noted Emerging Church author and speaker Brian McLaren shares some of his thoughts and beliefs about what it means to live a Kingdom kind of life here on earth. I commend it to your viewing and invite you to share with me your thoughts and impressions.  

Peace…..Fr. Warren

 

This is a clip from a friend who experienced Fenway for the first time a week ago.  There’s a certain liturgical quality in this that makes me smile.

 

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There is special significance for this Independence Day in our house. As many of you will know, Jonathan, our beloved son turns 13 tomorrow. The rite of passage that being a teenager is not lost on any of us. That this rite of passage comes as we celebrate American Independence from Colonial Rule as a nation is an interesting coincidence.

For some 200 years we as Americans have relished our Independence and the glorious success that Democracy has been for us and for countless others across the globe. And for good reason.

Having said that, I think we can fairly make the case the complete Independence, on any level, is a myth at best. The fact of the matter is that isolationism has never worked for America as much as we’d like it to. The same holds true with children, adolescents, and adults. This is especially true with the spiritual life. It is true that God’s presence is everywhere. I cannot deny that as a basic tenet of the religious life. We all, by virtue of our kinship with Jesus have access to God in ways that our Hebrew forbearers could not imagine. It is easy, and a bit dangerous, to think that we can have the fullest experience of God possible all alone. John Donne, famous Anglican preacher and poet penned these words,

“No man is an Island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.”

 

We have existence in God apart from others, but we cannot claim the fullness of fellowship that God desires for us all individually if we choose to make God and our relationship to God a private matter. As Christians the centrality of relationship is central to our belief. That’s why the Trinitarian understanding of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit is part of our ordering our common life. We are created for relationship.

I guess my point is (and I do have one) this: Independence is a step toward maturity, but it’s just a step and not the end to which we’ve been called. As we understand ourselves independently we are offered a great and noble choice, that is to choose interdependence. We cannot do without one another. We cannot experience God’s fullness outside of community. We cannot worship fully in our tradition without relationship. The Eucharist, by definition, is the community expressing its thanks to God for all that is.

Regardless of where you find yourselves tomorrow, I hope that in the midst of our Independence Day Celebrations we’ll remember that we depend on one another and indeed on everyone that is in ways that we can never completely understand.

Blessed 4th! May you have the courage to seek Interdependence!!!

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