Wherever you are on your journey of faith, you are welcome here!

Rector's Message

Rev. Beth FrankThe Rev. Beth Frank is a recent graduate of Bexley Hall Seminary in Columbus, Ohio.  She was ordained a (transitional) deacon in June, 2013, and was ordained to the sacred order of priests on December 6, 2013 - St. Nicholas Day.  She has been appointed by the bishop to serve New Life as Priest-in-Charge.

Transformation

In our recent gospel readings, Jesus has provided instruction to "the church" on sin, forgiveness, and reconciliation. I found myself last week reaching for Barbara Brown Taylor's book Speaking of Sin: The Lost Language of Salvation. It was one of my favorites in seminary: short (extremely important in those days), pithy, and thought-provoking. I still find it challenging in new ways each time I pick it up.

In this last reading, I was struck by a section that had no previous notes or markings. Taylor was describing Canadian theologian Douglas John Hall's assessment of the role of the church in our lives and society:

The church exists so that people have a community in which they may confess their sin—their own turning away from life ...—as well as community that will support them to turn back again. The church exists so that people have a place where they may repent of their fear, their hardness of heart, their isolation and loss of vision, and where—having repented they may be restored to fullness of life. —Speaking of Sin, p. 85.

We come to New Life hoping to be transformed and to join and walk with others who seek to be transformed. We come hoping to have an experience of the Holy, an encounter with God in our worship, fellowship and outreach. We seek inspiration from scripture and music and sharing of our stories and faith journeys. We seek inspiration (the holy nudges and stronger kicks in the behind) from the Holy Spirit. Even in our brokenness, we are knit together as the body of Christ, the hands and feet of Christ sent out to spread the gospel in word and deed.

...God's grace is not simply the infinite supply of divine forgiveness upon which hopeless sinners depend. Grace is also the mysterious strength God lends human beings who commit themselves to the work of transformation. —Ibid.

Thanks be to God for God's grace which nourishes, empowers, and transforms each of us.

Blessings,
Beth