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Advent Candle Lighting Readings

Readings to celebrate hope, joy, peace, love, celebration.

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Topics: Worship & Liturgy. Resource Types: Readings.

Stepping Out With the Sacred: Human Attempts to Engage the Divine

This is a masterful and engaging account of how humans through centuries and cultures have engaged and experienced the divine. Webb includes her own experiences, both personal and observed from travel in fifty countries, as well as centuries of theology, literature and travel writing. She meanders along winding trails, talk over the fence and drink wine with a stranger, literally and figuratively. To engage the larger-than-description Sacred, we need all the stories we can find, even if only to remind us the distance still to go and the limitless (sometimes unsuccessful) journey. As a teacher of world religions and art, and an artist, this will not be a string of anecdotes, but a woven together, reader-friendly, vividly painted, theologically reflective whole.

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Preservation or Evolution?

This author discusses his experience with the pursuit of critical questioning of historic religious texts.

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Coming of Age

1. Eternal Love, your grace we praise Which shapes and comforts all our days, Evolves the world we know. Let worship, symbols come of age To help us read beneath the page And test the status quo! …

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Topics: Devotional, Fiction and Poetry, and Worship & Liturgy. Resource Types: Hymns.

Is Progressive The New Liberal?

Is “progressive” the new liberal? The word progressive is frequently used these days referring to “non-fundamentalist” churches.  I used it as a theme for our Lenten sermon series: Progressive Christianity takes a fresh look at traditions and rituals. You may see the word used in newspaper and magazine articles.  What does it mean?  Is progressive simply the “new liberal”?  My perspective is yes and no. “Progressive Christianity” does not lend itself easily to definition.  It is more of a movement; a path; an approach than a belief system. It is often more interested in spirituality than religion. Unlike the “liberal churches” of the 1960’s and later, it is not necessarily closely aligned with one political perspective.  So how might we describe “progressive” Christianity?

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We Ask Your Blessing: 100 Prayers for Campus Occasions

A collection of prayers offered on various occasions by religious leaders on campuses all across America. When something important happens and a diverse community gathers in response, when praying seems the natural thing to do, what can be said? Particularly on the private campuses, the task of finding just the right words falls to chaplains and deans of religious life. Here are one hundred prayers, offered by twenty-six college and university chaplains, which can be read for private devotions or studied as expressions of hope for the spiritual unity of the whole human family.

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Topics: The Younger Generation and Worship & Liturgy. Ages: Adult. Resource Types: Books.

Re-Pitching the Tent: Reordering the Church Building for Worship and Mission

This book is about looking at outmoded church spaces to see what can be done to meet the needs of contemporary worshippers. The book provides the basis for a theological reflection on the part of the congregation so that they have a faith-basis for whatever renovations they decide to make.

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Topics: Worship & Liturgy. Ages: Adult. Resource Types: Books.

Transforming the Stone: Preaching Through Resistance to Change

Most preachers wonder if their sermons have any real and lasting effect on those who hear them. Lundblad guides us toward a way of preaching that has the potential for being genuinely transformative.

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Uncovering Your Church’s Hidden Spirit

Parishioners today look to their congregations to feed their spiritual hunger. But many members and clergy are not sure how the words “congregation” and “spirituality” fit together. Author Celia Hahn interviewed 30 lay people and clergy from five Episcopal congregations to discover their stories of congregational spirituality and to help them identify the congregation’s gifts for spiritual development. Foreword by Tilden Edwards, executive director of the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Direction. Study guide available for this book.

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The Feast of Our Lives: Re-Imaging Communion

Over 20 years of research went into this book that represents a life-long concern to understand and counter Christianity’s continued reliance on sin, fear, and guilt. By using the lenses of imagination and eucharistic imagery, I present …

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Topics: Worship & Liturgy. Resource Types: Books.

To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings

From the author of the bestselling Anam Cara comes a beautiful collection of blessings to help readers through both the everyday and the extraordinary events of their lives.John O’Donohue, Irish teacher and poet, has been widely praised for his gift of drawing on Celtic spiritual traditions to create words of inspiration and wisdom for today. In To Bless the Space Between Us his compelling blend of elegant, poetic language and spiritual insight offers readers comfort and encouragement on their journeys through life. O’Donohue looks at life’s thresholds-getting married, having children, starting a new job-and offers invaluable guidelines for making the transition from a known, familiar world into a new, unmapped territory. Most profoundly, however, O’Donohue explains “blessing” as a way of life, as a lens through which the whole world is transformed.

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Topics: Worship & Liturgy. Resource Types: Books.

Religionless Religion: Beyond Belief to Understanding

In these perilous times when the very survival of the human species is at stake, there is a desperate need for wisdom to provide guidance. The sacred literature of the world’s major religious traditions is a source for such wisdom, but it has largely been misinterpreted and misunderstood, and, thus, instead of being a source for wisdom, it has been a source for confusion and conflict. The ancient scriptures, for the most part, were written in a language which is quite different from ordinary language. It is a mythological language, which is symbolic, and therefore its meaning is hidden. In the Bible, for example, there are many narratives that appear to be historical, but they are history that has been mythologized, and therefore their surface meaning is not their real meaning. Clyde Edward Brown clearly illustrates that the correct interpretation of the world’s religious texts would lead to a different concept of religion. Instead of belief in the literal truth of texts that have been misinterpreted, the emphasis would be on having those religious values, such as social and economic justice, which are common to all religions.

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