Pastor Tripp just left for three weeks in Virginia. We will miss him while he is back East teaching at Virginia Theological Seminary (Episcopal) but we are delighted that Naomi Schulz, one of our interns for the coming church year is able and willing to step in. She will be with us for the first cookout of the season and will work with education for children, youth and adults for the next two Sundays and then one more Sunday in August. We are grateful to have such a delightful fill-in while Pastor Tripp is gone.
This coming Sunday our theme is “Justice and Grace.” We will focus on Luke’s version of the woman who anoints Jesus’ feet. It is a powerful story, one of my favorites. The drama includes a religious leader who thinks he has things all figured out, a woman of questionable reputation with a great and expanding soul, and Jesus who sees through them both, calling the first to accountability for his neglect of hospitality and offering the second forgiveness and healing as she practices both repentance and hospitality at a remarkably deep level. The lack of love closes Simon, the Pharisee, to the miracle of grace being enacted in his dining room; her openness to love transforms the woman’s life and makes her whole.
In Adult Spiritual Formation we will consider some of the work of the eminent psychiatrist and spiritual director, Gerald May (brother of Rollo May.) One of the texts for my program in Spiritual Direction is his book, The Awakened Heart: Opening Yourself to the Love You Need. In this book he writes about the ways in which love is foundational to our human existence and how the best of our living flows from that source when we let it.
Come Sunday at 10 AM and bring someone along to share the morning with you.
May God’s new thing flourish within us and among us.