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Who Loves Advent?

Posted by Lyndon, November 29, 2018

In my (un)scientific survey of friends and colleagues, I have determined that there are two types of people in the world: Advent people and Christmas people. If you are more  O Come, O Come Emmanuel than Joy to the World, then you are an Advent person. If the idea of Lessons and Carols makes you gleeful, you are most clearly an Advent person. If the brooding of John the Baptist or the wonder of Mary’s Magnificat inspires and challenges, then friends, you are in the Advent camp. If you like glitter and consumerism and unnecessarily happy music, then you belong at Christmas (just kidding!)

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Prayers of the (tiny) People

Posted by Ariel, October 17, 2018

Every Sunday during the 10:00 a.m. service, over a dozen children ages 9 and under scramble out of the Historic Church and into the portico right before the second hymn. As they clamor to line up and compare heights to see who has grown the most in the past week, I welcome them by saying, “Look at all these friends we have joining us for Children’s Chapel!” One of our fearless acolytes then leads them over to the chapel in the Parish House.

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Lord, Hear Our Prayer

Posted by Lyndon, September 26, 2018

Praying is one of those activities that people of faith are expected to do. In the churches in which I grew up, there were people in the congregation who were recognized as “prayer warriors”, an awkward title that nonetheless communicated something of the commitment of that person to the task of praying. In times of distress, you would meet with them for a time of prayer (and by “time”, it could be hours).

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Made to Bend

Posted by Noelle, September 19, 2018

I was recently asked what I think is the biggest challenge the Episcopal Church if facing today. I have a love/hate relationship with this question. On one hand, tackling the “biggest challenge” of this tradition that I love so much is my life’s work. On the other hand, it is such a loaded question. Just asking the question implies that if we could just pin down one giant problem, we could fix it and our churches would heal and grow in numbers and in faith.

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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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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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We Need Advent

Posted by Noelle, November 29, 2017

Most years, in the United States, Advent begins on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, giving us four full Sundays before we celebrate Christmas.

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Winter is Here

Posted by Matthew, July 19, 2017

Winter is here. At least, it is for the record-breaking 16 million viewers who turned in to watch the series premiere of Game of Thrones on Sunday night. By the end of the week, roughly 30 million people are expected to have watched “Dragonstone,” this week’s episode.

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Anniversary of Note

Posted by Ann, July 12, 2017

Ten years ago this week, I began my time as one of your ministers at Christ Church. I had just graduated from seminary and was ordained a deacon from the Diocese of Los Angeles on June 4, 2007. The first few months were a pretty steep learning curve; there is much they don’t teach you in seminary about what to expect in parish ministry. And Christ Church is a busy and complex place. At that time, we had eight clergy: four full-time and four Lilly residents. I had barely worked in an office before I got here, so just navigating the staff was a challenge. Before long, I wasn’t at all sure I was cut out to be a priest. (My ordination to the priesthood would not happen until December 2007.)

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