New Life Episcopal Church

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Deacon’s Dismissal

Return

My grandmother kept the brittle, yellowed obituary of Return Jonathan Meigs in her Bible. He achieved distinction as an officer in the Revolutionary Army and later as a pioneer in Ohio. The obituary concluded: “His father, when a young man, became enamored of a young Quaker woman. Though repeatedly rejected, he persisted in his suit….

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A Letter

A letter to a prisoner, dated December 3rd, 2008: “Dear Michael, Never a day goes by that I do not think of you. As a churchman, I have come to believe that thought alone may be a form of prayer. I offer now my prayer for your wellbeing, your good health and your peace of…

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Words

Did you ever know anyone famous? Not just be in the same room but have them speak to you? I have. Frederick Buechner, American writer, novelist, poet, autobiographer, essayist, preacher, theologian and ordained Presbyterian minister, was a teacher at a boarding school where I spent some time. Buechner once sought me out to tell me,…

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Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time to give God thanks for our blessings.Yet, if we have met with disappointment, let us find our way to gratitude without having everything we want or even need. Disappointment need not preclude gratitude, nor need gratitude crowd out the very real possibility of disappointment. We do not have to choose one…

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So…

The difference between the two is the first letter. I notice it in these contentious times … so many opinions, so very little agreement. Someone will say, “So, you believe…” and they will lay out their understanding of what they think I believe. With that, I’m on the defensive. Change the first letter and it’s…

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Leaders

There is a story of Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin, a champion of the working class during the French Revolution. He sat in a cafe as a crowd of supporters marched by. His words: “There go my people! I must find out where they are going so I can lead them!” The people of the church are…

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Longing

I am brought low by the events of each day, confounded by each news account. I struggle to keep my own demons at bay. What does God expect of me? Another letter to a senator? Signatures on a petition? What am I to do? I recollect words of Antoine de Saint-Exupery: “If you want to…

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Cross

What he told me went something like this: “For a long time I was understanding it all wrong, about when Jesus said, ‘Take up your cross and follow me.’ I had it that Jesus was carrying his cross to Calvary and there was all these other crosses set out, and I was supposed to take…

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Freddy

My sons’ pleadings were relentless. I was adamant. Just because every other boy in grade school watches Freddy Krueger’s Nightmare on Elm Street every weekend, not my sons. But they wore me down. I said “OK” but we would watch together. I made popcorn, put the tape in the machine and, with remote in hand,…

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Reflection

As I venture into the world to minister to prisoners and homeless men, I am frequently ministering to men who are not all that lovable. They have their own beliefs and opinions. I dispense the alms … they receive the alms … why can they not see the world as I see it? Alas, I…

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Loving, Learning, Serving, and Sharing our Faith