Monday, Dec 23, 2013
"The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness—on them light has shined."  Isaiah. 9:2 (NRSV)“In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified."  Luke. 2:8-9 (NRSV)Throughout these Advent days we have intentionally waited in dimness, reflection,... (read more)
Tuesday, Dec 17, 2013
On the second Sunday of Advent I had the opportunity to worship with one of the congregations of our conference. It was a joy and privilege. One of the pastors appointed to serve the congregation preached from Luke 1:26-56 and as you might expect focused on the unique angle of view that Mary brings to the God who is with us in Jesus Christ. The text for preaching includes what we have come to call the Magnificat (see verses 46-55). Mary has quite a story and qu... (read more)
Friday, Nov 15, 2013
Dear friends in Christ Jesus:I have throughout this week been at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina for the Council of Bishops (COB) annual meeting. It has been a week of beauty around the lake. Those who have travelled in the region know the beauty of which I speak.My colleagues and I have spent much time together in meaningful worship and in our covenant and accountability groups. Our committees have met to review progress on their responsibilities, and we have a... (read more)
Saturday, Nov 9, 2013
Dear Members of the West Ohio Annual Conference,Truly it is a privilege to be in Christ’s service with you in the West Ohio Conference. As we serve together, I am reminded of Jesus’ last instructions to the Disciples in Acts 1:8 (NIV): But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.For many years, the people of the West Ohio Conference have been... (read more)
Monday, Sep 9, 2013
Beloved in Christ Jesus:I greet you in the strong name of Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace. As I write and as you read we are in a season of remembrance and recollection of the horrific and life altering events of September 11, 2001. It is hard to fathom sometimes that this is the twelfth anniversary. As I reflect I call to mind where I was, what I was doing, what changed for me and what I am called to do in the shadow of unspeakable violence. I assume that you go... (read more)
Sunday, Sep 1, 2013
As Labor Day in the United States approached I reflected on the 90th Psalm once again. To be sure it was not written at any conscious level to be suitable for a Labor Day reflection. But a part of its timelessness and timeliness is that it speaks to a variety of situations that we as human beings face and struggle with. In it is praise and acclamation about God’s greatness, lament, reflection on the relationship of God, mortals and time and there is supplicatio... (read more)
Wednesday, Jul 17, 2013
July 17, 2013 Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ Jesus:To say that I was surprised by the decisions of the jury in Sanford, Florida in the trial of George Zimmerman for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin is an understatement. I offer this because as one who by trade traffics a fair amount in hyperbole, I don’t do understatement nearly as well. To be sure I had no predictions about the outcome of the trial. Maybe that is why I was and continue to be so surpri... (read more)
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Beloved in Christ Jesus:On Sunday, some 24 tornadoes tore through five states—Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, and Illinois—and destroyed 300 homes and claimed lives. On Monday another tornado touched down in the city of Moore, Oklahoma, destroying two primary schools, a hospital, and an as yet untold number of homes in the town. Conflicting reports set the death toll at 21 or more, many children are among the lives claimed.Even as the search for people is sti... (read more)
Saturday, Apr 20, 2013
Dear friends in Jesus Christ:I greet you in the strong name of Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace. We are coming to the end of a week of unimaginable violence, loss and grief. And, may I add, the recollection of historic loss and grief. The real truth is that the violence, loss and grief are all too imaginable in our world. That may be what pains me most.But over this weekend we get to do what we do as church week after week and that is gather the people in for... (read more)
Friday, Mar 1, 2013
March 1, 2013Beloved in Christ Jesus:In the Bible, there is a long history of God’s call and people’s response. “Moses!” God called from the burning bush and Moses answered, “Here I am.” “Samuel,” God called in the night. “Speak, your servant is listening,” young Samuel answered. “Who shall I send?” God asked in worship, and Isaiah spoke up, “Here I am, Lord, send me.” When God’s messenger visited Mary, the mother of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ replied, “H... (read more)