New Life Episcopal Church

Wherever you are on your journey of faith, you are welcome here!
Deacon’s Dismissal

Spaghetti

Joshua and I went to an Italian restaurant to celebrate his graduation from the sixth grade. From a poor family, Joshua struggled academically. All year we worked together, learning how to learn, practicing multiplication tables, filling in blanks on homework papers. At the restaurant, I helped Joshua choose a spaghetti dinner from the menu. As…

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Prisoner

“Why visit him?” he asked me. “He’s a prisoner!” Like I didn’t know that. Still, the question made me think. I believe visiting prisoners has done me some good. I like our shared meals from the vending machines. And, it’s a change of pace for me, accustomed as I’ve become to coming and going as…

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Happiness

The question was simple, “What does God want for us?” The old man answered, “God wants us to be happy.” The young man looked at the pavement, then at the sky, then at the old man. “That’s it? God’s gonna make me happy?” The old man looked at the pavement, then at the sky, and…

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Hairstyle

It was cancer. The treatments had started. My friend felt terrible when a few strands of her hair fell out. We went to a stylist who understood. In tears, my friend sat in the chair and the woman went to work. She cut a little here, cut a little there, turning the chair to the…

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Content

James lives in Castlebar, County Mayo, a poor and, in places, desolate part of Ireland. Half the homes are empty. James, his wife Fionna and their six children live in an old stone barracks attached to a lighthouse. They burn peat to cook and stay warm. They hike the mountains, visit neighbors, go to church…

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Words

Someone asked, “What words most changed your life?” Someone said their wedding vows; someone recalled a eulogy; someone remembered baby’s first words. Then a woman said, “We were young newlyweds, out on the town. That night, Ed had too much to drink. I begged Ed to let me drive but he wouldn’t listen. I was…

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Fifty Cents

Luke 6:30: “Give to everyone who begs from you.” Mostly I do. A man stands by the trash receptacle in front of a big box pharmacy. He asks me for fifty cents to make bus fare. It’s hot. He’s sweating. I don’t have fifty cents. I hand him a dollar and he offers me two…

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Prisoners

The Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko tells of a day in Moscow toward the end of World War II. Led by a cohort of Russian generals, there was a parade of captured German soldiers. As the prisoners approached the city, Russian citizens jeered them. The line of prisoners, some wounded, some without coats, stretched into the…

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Lottery

The man knelt in the cool dark of the church, head bowed, hands clasped, “Lord, please let me win the lottery!” For years he prayed, “Just this once! Let me win the lottery!” One night, deep in his prayer, he heard a stiffening wind. A beam high in the nave creaked then came a terrific…

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Five Dollar Prayer

I attended church with my dad only one time. My dad had a strict upbringing, no Sunday funnies until Monday, that sort of thing. He never forgot it. He let me read the funnies on Sunday and, even so, I found the church. Eventually. My Dad believed in the Five Dollar Prayer. Once, when a…

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