Worship Materials: Remembrance of the Dead

From the Celebrating Mystery collection

THOUGHTS FOR REFLECTION
1. To forget the dead is to be alienated from part of oneself.
2. When we liberate our ancestors from the myths that surround them we liberate ourselves.
3. Remembering our ancestors gives life to ourselves and also to them, for we are our ancestors and they are us.

read more

If Jesus Addressed Congress

Second in a Series exploring the relationship between one’s theological framework and political viewpoint …

Earlier this year the Prime Minister of Israel addressed a joint session of Congress. Last week, Pope Francis did the same. Many believed the former had a political ax to grind, and the latter a pastoral message with political points to preach.

For many modern day Christians, Francis embodies many of the teachings and much of the life-style of the Galilean sage. Unless one believes in the highly speculative Second Coming, Jesus will likely never be invited by the Speaker of the House of Representatives to follow Benjamin and Francis, addressing our political leaders. But if we were to draw from the earliest available records of his theological – if not political – perspective, what might Jesus have to say to our elected government officials? Read more.

read more

Mindful Christianity: On Being Jesus’ Twin

This is an excerpt from a book Jim Burklo is writing this summer: MINDFUL CHRISTIANITY. The research he’s doing for this project has taken him deep into the history of Christian spirituality. According to Jim: “The more I learn, the more I have to learn!”

read more

Go Down, Moses Racism: What to do?

We know what to do. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights begins: “Whereas the peoples of the United Nations have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom.” Unitarian Universalists claim the “inherent worth and dignity of all humanity.” Christians claim the Apostle Paul’s ecstatic revelation that “You are no longer Jew or Greek, no longer slave or freeborn, no longer ‘male and female.’ Instead you all have the same status in the service of God’s anointed Jesus.” Leviticus 19:18 says, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Jesus said, “Love your enemies.”

read more

Shedding Light on the Gospels Study Guide (based on Bishop Spong’s “Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism”)

This  Study Guide, Shedding Light on the Gospels is based on Bishop Spong’s “Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism.” The Study Guide is organized by Discussion Sessions and includes extensive quotations extracted from Bishop Spong’s book. In addition to Bishop Spong’s book, we will be reading the three gospels: Mark, Matthew and Luke (in that order).

read more

Follow Jesus: a Hymn

I heard a contemporary hymn on Sunday morning during the Eucharist and fell in love with the melody. It was the “Untitled Hymn (Come to Jesus)” by Chris Rice. It reminded me of Randy Newman’s music—a soft …

read more

ENCYCLICAL LETTER LAUDATO SI’ OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS ON CARE FOR OUR COMMON HOME

“LAUDATO SI’, mi’ Signore” – “Praise be to you, my Lord”. In the words of this beautiful canticle, Saint Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. “Praise be to you, my Lord, through our Sister, Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with colored flowers and herbs”.

read more

Walking Boldly Amidst the Storms – Based on Matthew 14:22-33

A troubling storm has engulfed the disciples. On a rickety fisherman’s boat in the early morning hours, a violent storm with terrible winds has surrounded them. The NRSV says their boat was battered, King James says it was tossed, the NIV says it was buffeted; whatever term you prefer, the boat is getting beaten up.

read more

Haiku for Progressive Christianity

by Jenelle Dove

Love, care, lend, do good;
Only with our closest friends
As they will for us.

read more

Worship Materials: Sexuality, Sensuousness and Gender Equality

From the Celebrating Mystery collection

Our senses and our use of them are part of God’s creation.
To attempt to deny our senses is as much an insult to God as is the misuse of them.

read more

Interfaith Golden Rule Poster

Published by Scarboro Missions

The Golden Rule, known also as the Ethic of Reciprocity, is arguably the most consistent, most prevalent and most universal ethical principle in history. Many regard it as the most concise and general principle of ethics.

read more

What Harm Would Jesus Reduce?

Legalization of marijuana and decriminalization of other drugs won’t solve the problems of drug use and abuse. But such a change in policy would reduce the sum of the harm caused by drug use and the war against it. A careful reading of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount reveals what divine love asks of us: a drug policy based on mercy, not on perfection.

read more

Yes, Leviticus: Sacred Ecology

Good stewardship of the Planet is part of the movement for “Eco-justice”: leaving the resources in the ground; insuring a legacy of life for future generations; treating the Planet as an autonomous organism, whose continuing survival depends on the health of its interconnected systems: the earth, the air, the fire, the water.

read more

How Did Jesus Let Go of His Cross?

I would have been angry. And exhausted. And resentful, bitter, unforgiving. And not just of those who tortured me verbally and physically, spitting in my face, nailing me to that cross, but all those who looked away, pretending it wasn’t happening or worse, that it wasn’t important, and fearful of a similar fate if they defended me.

read more

Worship Materials: Easter

From the Festive Worship collection

1. Easter is the festival of the irrepressible God whom not even death can contain.
2. Most of us would prefer a cozy God to a God who shatters our complacency. Yet Easter is about a God who bursts tombs of the familiar, the ordinary and the mediocre.

read more

Worship Materials: Good Friday

From the Festive Worship collection

THEME The mystery of suffering

THOUGHTS FOR REFLECTION
1. When love and hatred engage in mortal conflict it is love which suffers most; but love has the final victory.

read more

Waking to the Light

“… remain here, and stay awake with me.” Jesus, Matthew 26: 38 One night of our dog’s life lasted for just a few minutes. Our yellow Labrador, Kai, was playing in our front yard on a sunny …

read more

Waking to the Light: Mindfulness and Kindness

I’ve spent a certain amount of my life with my head stuck in a jug, convinced that the whole world is dark. For me, mindfulness meditation practice has been the means by which the jug gets pulled off and I’m able to wake to the light.

read more