With a handful of items, you or our church can make a small Advent wreath, perfect for a bedside table or desk. Truly an object of devotion for the season.
Our Christian faith is rich in symbolism, both ancient and modern. Easter, after our period of study and repentance, offers us every opportunity to share the Love of God in Jesus Christ and to share our joy that He is risen indeed! *Chocolate bunnies, meanwhile, don't have much to teach us about Christianity. They are good to eat, and always the first to go from my Easter basket, starting with the ears!
On Christmas Eve, we, the esteemed actors, gathered in the narthex dressed up in our bedsheets and other bits of hodge-podge costume, complete with Baby Joe in his peppermint-stripped Christmas suit -- a kooky-looking bunch.
I'd learned that what I thought the moms wanted was probably not what they wanted at all. And what they wanted was changing as their children grew.
Something for everyone. Nourishment for spirits of all ages. Perhaps not the quiet and contemplative Advent event I thought I should offer (and, subsequently, that they should want), but what they actually need, want, and will appreciate.
I heard the same stories from across a great chasm of different understandings. I heard broiling anger and mistrust from both sides of a relationship I’d always admired. I saw where each party’s words and actions left gaping wounds to the other’s psyche.
As religious educators, we often bemoan the lack of commitment made to faith practices among those we wish were more faithful. But how often do we make clear exactly what we believe is critical for parents to do in order to raise children in the Christian faith?
Seven million grandparents are living with a grandchild and roughly 39% of them serve as their primary caregiver.
We may not be able to describe scientifically what happens to children who attend church Sunday after Sunday, but I believe something deeply and profoundly formational happens.
When God’s people gather for worship we include a wide variety of individuals who share a basic and deep need to be there. We all need to feel loved and wanted and accepted as one of God’s children which we are. We need to hear God’s Word proclaimed and to pray and sing with others. But, we also have some very different needs.
Compline is the monastic service traditionally read just before sleep. Compline offers kids structured scripture and prayer perfect for the end of the day.
He arrived in a plain brown envelope, with an evangelical message stuck to the front: "Do not bend. Flat Jesus enclosed."
When we stopped homeschooling after the primary years, and the boys went to grade school, finding time to read the Bible in the morning was a lot more challenging. There was no peaceful time when everyone was together in the same room. I ended up settling into a pattern of reading to them as they ate breakfast.
Whether gathering with children, youth, or adults sometimes you just need an ice-breaker to get folks warmed up, moving, or engaged with each other.
I understand that there is evil in the world. I also know about mental illness. I am not naïve or ignorant. But really, what happened?
They can drop the children off at the church and join other parents for a night out or spend time by themselves. Bouknight said raising young children can take its toll on grandparents, and the Parents Night Out gives them time to nurture their marriage.
There I stood by the tub with two shivering little girls, cowering in the corner - as if naked and ashamed in the Garden of Eden. The older one became the tearful spokes person as she stammered out their heartfelt question, "Mother, do you still love us?"
St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in Denver likes to dance to our own slightly different beat, even while we embrace the scripture and deeply rooted traditions of our faith. So, not surprisingly, we have a weeklong summer day camp every year. Also not surprisingly, it’s not Vacation Bible School.
Each year Stephen Rozzelle creates a list of Lenten practices, one for each day. Powerful, inspiring, and often humorous. Enjoy and share.
You are welcome here. This is your space. This is a safe space. A space to remind yourself who you are and why you're here. A space to wind and unwind; to retreat and to advance; to withdraw and to move out refreshed. A space to be apart from other people and yet to be aware that you are sharing the space with them, that they are walking alongside you; that their journeys touch yours.