Mystery Worship Eleven: A Missed Opportunity

Note:  this is part of an ongoing series.  Mystery Worship One is here;  Mystery Worship Two is here; Mystery Worship Three is here. Four is here. Five is here. Six is here. Seven is here. Eight is here. Nine is here. Ten is here. On my first Sunday back in Texas, I decided to attend an Orthodox Church for my Mystery Worship time. With some research for preparation, I discovered that the Orthodox Church considers itself the only true church, and is not in communion with other Christian groups.  Those who receive the sacrament of Holy Communion are expected to have made a confession in the presence of … Continue reading Mystery Worship Eleven: A Missed Opportunity

Why It Matters: The Episcopal Situation in the North Texas Conference

Jeffrey Weiss, a reporter with the Dallas Morning News, has asked these questions concerning the episcopal situation facing the North Texas Conference:  “Why does this matter? And to who? Clearly, it’s a big deal to North Texas Methodist clergy. But who else should be paying attention? And why?” Here is my response: Does this Episcopal situation matter to anyone besides the United Methodist clergy? Three Levels On one level, and speaking on a short term time frame, no, not really. We clergy and the members of the churches we serve are the only ones who experience anything directly. Even then, … Continue reading Why It Matters: The Episcopal Situation in the North Texas Conference

The Church as Jazz Band

“My bags are packed, I’m ready to go . . .”  People of a certain age may recognize this song, “Leavin’ on a Jet Plane”—and the mixed joy and sorrow it brings. Yes, I’m leaving—and on a jet plane, but just for three months.  This is a long-planned Sabbatical which is intended to give me rest with time to heal, write and pray, plus spend time with my very scattered family whom I rarely get to see. Today was my last Sunday in the pulpit. So often when an interim pastor comes in for a time, s/he is facing a … Continue reading The Church as Jazz Band

Alone At the Cross

Rev. Frederick Schmidt, who blogs at Patheos, wrote some words in a post about the Archbishop of Canterbury which describe better the challenges of pastoral leadership better than any I’ve seen before.  I’m quoting large parts of his latest post, bolding the sentences that hit me the hardest, because he says so well what I’ve been thinking that I want to make sure I can read these words again the next time I become completely discouraged in my life as pastor: One, the leadership role of a pastor, priest, bishop, or archbishop (in this case) is different from almost any other … Continue reading Alone At the Cross