iOS app Android app

On Scripture

Walls: Not in My Backyard (Luke 4:21-30)

Greg Carey | Posted 01.26.2016 | Religion
Greg Carey

Lots of our public conversations these days relate to boundaries. In a presidential election year, with seemingly countless candidates and endless debates, it's hard to avoid the angry voices and fierce scowls.

Tamir Rice and the Anguish of Our National Sin (Nehemiah 8:1-10)

Robert Williamson | Posted 01.18.2016 | Religion
Robert Williamson

Facing the anguish that must surely arise, we must not tarry in our guilt too long, but take action to right the wrongs we have done. To make reparations to those we have oppressed. For it is in this just peace that the Lord takes joy. And the joy of the Lord will be our strength.

Manifested Hospitality for the Greater Good (John 2:1-11)

Rev. Shively Smith | Posted 01.26.2016 | Religion
Rev. Shively Smith

The activities of the Christian community should be no less vigorous as we enter the mid-month point in January 2016 and the energy of the Christmas Season has passed. In fact, it is on this Second Sunday after Epiphany that an honest evaluation of our situation locally, regionally, and abroad should be made.

The Missing Piece (Luke 3:15-17, 21-22)

Rev. Susan Sparks | Posted 01.05.2016 | Religion
Rev. Susan Sparks

In our scripture this week, Luke 3:15-17, 21-22, we are reminded of life's key piece through the story of Jesus' baptism. The moment Jesus emerges from the water, a voice descends from heaven and declares: "You are my beloved son, with whom I am well pleased."

Looking for Jesus (Luke 2:41-52)

Jim Kast-Keat | Posted 12.21.2015 | Religion
Jim Kast-Keat

You'll always find what you're looking for. Unless, of course, you're Mary and Joseph, looking for your preteen son on your road trip home from the Passover festival in Jerusalem.

Ordinary Acts of Grace (Luke 3:7-18)

Rev. Dr. Eric D. Barreto | Posted 12.07.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Eric D. Barreto

In recent weeks, catastrophic acts of violence have become numbingly ordinary, banal. From Paris and Syria to Colorado and California, our nightly news has fallen into a depressing handful of templates and tropes. We need a John the Baptist these days.

Selective Salvation in a Fear-Filled World (Luke 3:1-6)

Karoline M. Lewis | Posted 12.02.2015 | Religion
Karoline M. Lewis

It is no accident that John the Baptist, whose birth to Elizabeth, old and barren, narrated in the first chapter of Luke, quotes Isaiah, and Jesus will do the same in his sermon in Nazareth. Isaiah was God's word to those exiled in Babylon, separated from life as they knew it because it was separation from the God of life.

Black Friday: Can't Buy Love (Jeremiah 33:14-16 and Luke 21:25-36)

Karyn L. Wiseman, Ph.D. | Posted 11.24.2015 | Religion
Karyn L. Wiseman, Ph.D.

Let's work on all of this during this season. Let's talk to one another. Let's refuse to buy into the consumer mentality. Let's spend our time and resources on each other in more faithful and spiritual ways.

Veterans Day: War On Every Shore (Mark 13:1-8)

Rev. Shively Smith | Posted 11.09.2015 | Religion
Rev. Shively Smith

When wars initiate, conflicts ignite, and earthquakes hit, our service members and veterans act. ALL those who serve for justice, whether under the uniform of military or under the "uniform" of personal choice and moral code help make "the end" still be able to come.

Our Children Are Us (Psalm 127)

Rev. Dr. Cari Jackson | Posted 11.03.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Cari Jackson

When we see ourselves and others as God's heritage, we will be more diligent to help those who are lost because of maltreatment, violence and abuse. Troubled youth, runaways, delinquent youth, and all of the categories we use, are lost and need help to find their way.

Beijing +20 and Michelle Obama: What Is Women's Work? (Ruth 1:1-18)

Lisa Davison | Posted 10.27.2015 | Religion
Lisa Davison

Those involved in the organization of Beijing +20 are calling all of the countries that signed the Beijing Declaration and Platform to accountability. They are asking everyone to give careful attention to the advances that have been made and the unfinished items on the agenda for gender equality and female empowerment.

Religious Traditions: Destined to Compete? (Hebrews 7:23-28)

Rev. Dr. Jaime Clark-Soles | Posted 10.19.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Jaime Clark-Soles

Dallas has one of the largest Muslim populations and number of mosques in the nation. Yet, the call for Christians to protest at mosques, sometimes encircling the mosque while armed with rifles, continues. Google "Christians protest mosques" and see what's happened just in October.

Guns, Drugs, Sexual Violence: What Can We Do? (Hebrews 5:1-10)

Mihee Kim-Kort | Posted 10.12.2015 | Religion
Mihee Kim-Kort

I can only say, as I often do during communion when I partake of the bread and cup: Thanks be to God. I do so trusting and hoping that there is more beyond the forests of our world's darkness.

Pope Francis US Visit: Love and Joy Trump Rules (Mark 10: 2-18)

Sr. Simone Campbell | Posted 10.05.2015 | Religion
Sr. Simone Campbell

Pope Francis, like Jesus, responds to the children. Pope Francis literally lit up every time he was in proximity to children. One story really touched my heart. I talked with Seanta who was visiting Philadelphia from South Carolina for the meeting on the family.

Domestic Violence: Are the Children Safe? (Mark 10: 2-16)

Rev. Dr. Luke A. Powery | Posted 09.28.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Luke A. Powery

There is brokenness -- broken bodies and relationships -- so it is of no surprise per se when we see Jesus and the Pharisees engage in a conversation about marriage and divorce, topics that may heighten our awareness of human brokenness in our society.

Pope Francis Visits US: Greed Is Your Fatal Flaw (Esther 7:1-6, 9-10; 9:20-22)

Amy Erickson | Posted 09.21.2015 | Religion
Amy Erickson

During his visit to Bolivia in July, the Pope addressed an audience of farmers, trash-pickers, craftspeople, and un-unionized workers. He expressed his compassion for the poor and the marginalized and advocated passionately for them, but he did not stop there.

Syrian Refugee Crisis: Our Chance to See God (Mark 9:30-37)

Rev. Dr. Cari Jackson | Posted 09.14.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Cari Jackson

Because of the extreme anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment so pervasive in today's media, we must think not only about a governmental immigration policy, we must also think about and pray for a spiritual principle of welcome.

Communal Return and Personal Renaissance: What Forgiveness Makes Possible (Parshat Nitzavim, Deuteronomy 29:9-30:20)

Rabbi Rachel Sabath Beit-Halachmi | Posted 09.09.2015 | Religion
Rabbi Rachel Sabath Beit-Halachmi

The promise of profound renewal during the upcoming High Holy Days is tremendous, but whether or not we will merit the fulfillment of that promise depends largely upon us.

Help End Hunger: It's Simple (James 1:17-27)

Greg Carey | Posted 08.24.2015 | Religion
Greg Carey

Feed a hungry person. The early followers of Jesus were in no social position to eliminate poverty or overturn the economic system of the Roman Empire. They could feed hungry people. Ending hunger is overwhelming. Growing produce for hungry people is not.

Ferguson 1 Year Later: Give Us Wisdom (1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14)

Lisa Sharon Harper | Posted 08.11.2015 | Religion
Lisa Sharon Harper

In Ferguson and across St. Louis, one year ago, I met several spiritual leaders who were facing just such a moment. Women and men alike stood before God and asked for wisdom in August 2014.

Theological Track Standing: A User's Guide to Unity in Church and Society (Ephesians 4:1-16)

Jacob D. Myers | Posted 07.28.2015 | Religion
Jacob D. Myers

The central point Paul wishes to drive home is that Christians ought to be a people of hope. It is to hope that God has called us (1:15). This hope does not rest upon human effort or actualization; rather, it is according to God's infinite mercy (2:8-10).

American Disability Act: Working Toward Welcome and Dignity for All

Lisa Cataldo | Posted 07.22.2015 | Religion
Lisa Cataldo

The truth is that anyone who could be called "able-bodied" (or "able-minded") could at the next minute be not so. Our physical and mental abilities are extraordinarily fragile, and in every sense temporary.

When War Becomes a Way of Life (2 Samuel 11:1-15)

Raj Nadella | Posted 07.21.2015 | Religion
Raj Nadella

This week's text -- 2 Samuel 11:1-15 -- suggests that the phenomenon of ordinary people being asked to fight unnecessary wars initiated by people in power is not entirely modern

All the Charlestons: We Press On for Justice

Rev. Dr. Eric D. Barreto | Posted 07.13.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Eric D. Barreto

A year punctuated with tragedies around racial inequalities culminated in a burst of hateful violence during a Wednesday evening Bible study at the Mother Emanuel church. And as these nine faithful souls have been laid to rest, I have been struck by a refrain that many of my friends have been voicing.

Freedom: For Everyone or Just People Like Us? (2 Corinthians 12:2-10)

Rev. Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder | Posted 06.29.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder

What happens when God is the one who pricks our emotional equilibrium? What is humanity's recourse when the Creator is the source of our angst? More personally, it seems we are not as accommodating of individual views or approaches to the "Divine." Just as people come from multiple social locations and backgrounds, so are their religious traditions. However, respect for such faith diversity proves challenging.