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A Merry, Merry Noise

Posted by Jason, May 9, 2018

This past Sunday, our Cherub Choir sang for the final time this program year. As expected, they did a great job. Working with these young singers is a highlight of my week. They are enthusiastic, energetic, inquisitive, loving, and fun.

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Kids Nowadays

Posted by Santiago, March 23, 2018

Wow. I stopped scrolling through my Facebook feed to read what my friend Roger had posted. "Kids nowadays", he started. I thought he was complaining about kids of this generation losing their manners or acting weird. Boy, was I wrong. "Kids nowadays: These kids today are making the world a better place. A safer place." The post was accompanied by a photo of Parkland student Emma Gonzalez (@Emma4Change) holding a sign: #NeverAgain.

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Making Worship Longer

Posted by Jason, March 14, 2018

Not long ago, I attended a service at a different church and the hymns were all shortened – that is, we only sang random verses of each hymn rather than all of them. It was especially odd given that for one hymn, we sang verses 1 and 4, but verse 3 ended with a comma and verse 4 was a continuation of the thought from verse 3.

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Walking the Middle Ground and Marching for our Lives

Posted by Heather, March 1, 2018

On the first Sunday in Lent, part of my sermon focused on gun violence, what I see as our nation’s obsession with guns and how that is connected to the second renunciation in the baptism liturgy, and about finding the middle ground for a conversation about guns and gun violence in our nation. Out of the mass shooting and deaths of 14 youth and three adults at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, our nation has seen two sets of responses. One set has come from the usual sources on their usual sides – and without much middle ground from either those who promote a right to bear arms/guns in the Second Amendment as being without restrictions or from those who promote only having arms/guns as being in the hands of the police and other civil and military authorities.

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God is God and I am Not

Posted by Matthew, February 14, 2018

“Thank you all so much for doing this.”

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Saying Goodbye is hard….and yet it’s vitally important to do

Posted by Ann, February 7, 2018

Somebody stood in line this past Sunday to tell me they wouldn’t be here for my final Sunday, and then said, “But I am not saying ‘Goodbye.’ I’m saying ‘See you around.’” It was hard even for her to look me in the eye.  It’s true, we might bump into each other, he and I, but goodbyes are important and if we avoid them we miss out on something powerful.

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A New Instrument of Praise

Posted by Jason, February 5, 2018

In the fall of 2012, organ consultant Jonathan Ambrosino visited Christ Church to give us an assessment of the 1975 Austin Organ in our church. His detailed report analyzed the condition of our organ as well as its limitations. He noted that the instrument should likely continue for another decade before requiring any major attention, but also noted that the organ is not musically remarkable, lacking in “character, variety and loveliness of tone,” and that its appearance “gives itself away as a child of the Modern Movement. Rather than echoing the ornamental grammar of its surroundings, it gives the impression of an industrial object.” Guest organists over the past 13 years have all made similar comments.

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The Peace of God, it is no Peace

Posted by Jason, January 24, 2018

When parishioner Bill Eckhof died a few years ago, he had wisely left requests for his own funeral. One of the hymns he requested was #661, They cast their nets in Galilee. I was caught by surprise because Bill was a regular 8:00 worshiper and I did not recall us singing this hymn very often, if ever, at the 8:00 service. While it also appeared in The Hymnal 1940, I never thought it was a well-known hymn. Nevertheless, I’m so thankful to Bill because he led me to look at the hymn with fresh eyes and now it is a hymn that I deeply love myself. 

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AA Changed My Life

Posted by Santiago, January 17, 2018

In a tiny coffee shop in Toronto, my friend Pierre* asked me to accompany him to his first Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. He wore a tan corduroy jacket, and he fidgeted with the fleece collar as he explained how nervous he was about going to the meeting. He had spent the night before looking for an A.A. venue in Toronto where no one would recognize him. He settled for a meeting in the basement of a church in the North West. I told him I was happy to accompany him. Pierre smiled at that. But I had lied. I had no desire to attend an A.A. meeting. I didn’t have a drinking problem, but I was afraid the meeting would force me to ponder about my own unhealthy habits.

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Christmas Treasures

Posted by Heather, January 11, 2018

A couple of years ago, my mother and I pulled out of storage a beautiful dress winter coat that she had made for me when I was about ten years old. The coat is a red, loopy, wool-like fabric, with white “fur” edging the hood and cuffs, patch pockets, with a silver satin lining. It closes with “frogs,” not buttons – I remember that I thought frogs were so unique and beautiful when I was that age. We got it out of storage with the hope that one of my daughters might wear it.  The red coat has been worn a few times but the weird winter weather in Virginia meant that some years it was too wet or too warm to wear.

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