Sunday, March 25, 2012

Mary Speaks and Judas Turns

Jeremiah 31:31-34 I will write my law on their hearts.
Mary 4-7 Mary turned their minds to good.
John 12:20-33 Whoever serves me, God will honour.

The seed of true humanity is that which falls into the earth and dies.for then it bears much fruit. As we move towards the last hour of Jesus' life and Jesus begins to shed light on the implications that his crucifixion and resurrection will have on all of humanity we will gaze into the lives of two of Jesus' disciples -- Judas and Mary Magdalene. Each has a very different relationship with Jesus; each has come from a very different place; each reacts to this news in a different way. How we will reconcile with God and accept that God's law is written on our hearts? How will our lives be reconciled and transformed when Jesus Christ is risen? What will Mary say and what will Judas do?

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Saved by Grace Through Faith

Ephesians 2:1-10 From death to life
Psalm 139 You have searched me and known me
Luke 3:15-16, 21-22 The Holy Spirit in Jesus' baptism

Our salvation is not "earned" but it is chosen. This is the distinction Paul struggles to describe, the role of faith along with grace. In baptism, the mystery of the sacrament reflects this truth -- we open ourselves to the power of the Holy Spirit -- and even though our baptism happens only once in a lifetime, this opening of our hearts is a day to day way of life.

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Wellness for the World

Isaiah 61:1-4 Liberty to the captives
Luke 4:16-24 Rejection at Nazareth

The social gospel tradition is a reflection of the heart of Jesus' ministry and teachings, which in turn was a reflection of the prophetic tradition in his Hebrew heritage. As the church, we seek to understand and to fulfil our prophetic mission for our time, and today we explore this challenge specifically in relation to public health policy in Canada.

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Monday, March 5, 2012

L.E.N.T. -- Let's Eliminate Negative Thinking

Psalm 40: 1-10 I will sing a new song.
Ephesians 3:16-19 May you be rooted and grounded in love.
Mark 8: 31-38 Set your mind on divine things.

We are often called to give up something for Lent, a practice of penitence and discipline. It has been suggested by one member of our congregation that perhaps this year we could work towards eliminating negative thinking. One of the ways that we might achieve this, which has been suggested by another member of our congregation, is through the practice of Holy Manners. A past United Church Moderator, Marion Pardy, said: "The church needs to practice holy manners. We are called to be gentle, patient and compassionate with one another". As we journey with Jesus during Lent, what cross will we take up and carry and with what spirit will we do this? The spirit of negativity or the spirit of love and understanding?

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