hymn

Stained glass church window depicting the Parable of the Talents from Matthew 25

Stained glass church window depicting the Parable of the Talents from Matthew 25.

The Sunday, Nov. 13 lectionary gospel is Jesus’ Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30). 

Kari Jo Verhulst, in Sojourners, reflected on Jesus’ challenging teaching: “The point is not to perfect our particular gifts, or ourselves, but to quit hoarding ourselves from others, and instead step out in faith that we have been given all we need.” 

The following new hymn affirms that Jesus’ parable calls us to faithfulness even when it involves risk and challenge today.

O God, we yearn for safety; We long to be secure.

Yet faithful, loving service Is what you value more.

You give us what is needed; You love, forgive and save.

Then, sending us to serve you, You call us to be brave.

You give to some ten talents—to others, two or three;

To some you give one blessing To manage faithfully. ...

the Web Editors 9-29-2011
Today Religion News Service reporter Daniel Burke has an absolutely stellar, exclusive interview with Terri Roberts, the mother of Charles Carl "Charlie" Roberts IV, who, on Oct.
Cathleen Falsani 9-13-2011

Don't believe most of what you'll hear about Kevin Smith's new movie, Red State.

It is not an angry tirade against religion, nor is it an attack on Christianity guised as a horror flick laden with gratuitous violence.

Smith has described Red State as a horror film, and it is that, but not in the conventional Nightmare on Elm Street iteration. There is violence for sure, but nothing approaching the unrelenting bloodbath of, say, The Passion of the Christ.

[Editors' note: Below is a hymn written by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette to inspire churches to further support and pray for famine relief in Somalia.]

O God, You Love the Needy
7.6.7.6 D LLANGLOFFAN ("Rejoice, Rejoice, Believers")

O God, you love the needy and care for all the poor!
Today our hearts are heavy with news of drought and war.
When plantings yield no harvest, when hungry people die,
When families flee, defenseless -- Lord, hear your people's cry!

Many people remember "O God, Our Words Cannot Express," a hymn written on the afternoon of September 11, 2001. The hymn was quickly shared by email and Web postings (it is still on over 10,000 websites); it was used by many churches on that evening and in the days that followed. The hymn was featured in newspaper stories, radio programs, twice on national PBS-TV, and on BBC-TV in the United Kingdom. YouTube has the Church World Service music video by Emmy winner Pete Staman of this hymn being sung by Noel Paul Stookey (of "Peter, Paul & Mary") with the Northfield Mount Herman School Choir.

The new posting of this interfaith hymn includes a revised version for the 10th anniversary. Also included is "God, We've Known Such Grief and Anger", a hymn lifting up Christian hope in the face of disaster that was written for the first year anniversary of 9/11. Last week I wrote a new hymn for the tenth anniversary of September 11 with an emphasis on working for peace and justice for all.

the Web Editors 7-28-2011

1100728-johnstott[Editors' note: Rev. John Stott, one of the world's most influential evangelical figures over the past half-century, died this Wednesday at age 90. Rev. Stott served as a contributing editor for Sojourners magazine, when we were known as The Post American, and wrote this article for the November/December, 1973 issue of the magazine. We will always remember Rev. Stott for his profound contributions to our community and the Church.]

It seems to be a characteristic of the Anglo-Saxon mind to enjoy inhabiting the "polar regions" of truth. If we could straddle both poles simultaneously, we would exhibit a healthy balance. Instead, we tend to "polarize". We push some of our brothers to one pole, while keeping the other as our own preserve.

What I am thinking of now is not so much questions of theology as questions of temperament, and in particular the tension between the "conservative" and the "radical."

This hymn was originally used for the dedication of the 180 solar panels on the sanctuary of Limestone Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, Delaware where I am the co-pastor.
Eugene Cho 1-21-2011
It's amazing what one article can do, but one thing that's clear is Amy Chua is going to sell some books. Cha-ching.

Jeannie Choi 1-14-2011
Dutch Winter. Chinese Mothers. Martin Luther King Jr. Here's a little round up of links from around the web you may have missed this week:

Many people grew up enjoying the song, "Zacchaeus was a wee little man," celebrating this beloved story of Jesus and a tax collector.
When the nation is the object of one's highest concern; when national documents are considered holy scripture; when the nation's founders and historical figures are lifted to the status of demi-god
This hymn-prayer was written in response to the ongoing oil spill from the Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig that started on April 20th.
Jim Wallis 5-10-2010
Yesterday I heard one of the best Mother's Day sermons I can remember. It was by the pastor at our family's church, Rev. Jeff Haggray of First Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.

Charlton Breen 5-10-2010
Psalm 94 is not my psalm, and perhaps it's not yours either. Psalm 8; Psalm 23; Psalm 100. They get a lot of air time because they really speak to us.
Ruth Hawley-Lowry 5-07-2010
Mother's Day is a challenge. While advertisements evoke misty eyed memories and quaint appreciation for mothers, the truth is that Mother's Day began as a call to action by Julia Ward Howe.
Steve Holt 4-23-2010
"To believe is human, to doubt divine."

Ernesto Tinajero 3-30-2010
The other has been a philosophical idea with a rich history.
Nadia Bolz-Weber 2-10-2010

This week my friend Sara reminded me that the really amazing thing about 1 Corinthians 13 is that even hundreds of thousands of schlocky wedding and inspirational posters and bad Christian coffee mugs can't kill it. Paul's hymn to love is perhaps one of the most recognizable texts in the New Testament. And it is really beautiful

Nadia Bolz-Weber 1-19-2010
My family and I returned from vacation Tuesday to news reports of the devastation in Haiti.

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