Immigration is not the problem. Global instability is the problem. These teens would never have left their families, their homes or their countries if they did not have to leave to survive or to provide.
Piero della Francesca gets thunderingly right what so many Christians get so stunning wrong. Raised on the first day of the week – a day any faithful Jew would understand as the first day of creation – God in Christ has begun the re-creation of this world. This work of making all things new is not complete, but it has begun.
Someone living with an anxiety disorder (or any medical condition) that makes being in loud, dark areas or separated from family unendurable does not feel welcomed. This is not a commentary on the theology or religiosity of the “turn up the volume and dim the lights, no children allowed” movement. The concern here is how the Body of Christ meets those who would dare join in for worship.
Always, the Celtic knots and strands twist and braid a pattern that is beautiful and elegant, at once demonstrating the complexity of God’s creativity and the simplicity or unity that marks all things as God’s creation.
These hymns, like the psalms, come from or speak to different experiences – some quite specific, others more general – and they express a wide variety of feelings toward God, ranging from thanksgiving and adoration to supplication to bitter grief. The hymn I came upon that had a reference to Jesus weeping was under the heading of “For a Child in the Small-Pox.” In the midst of what would have been an agonizing time for the parents as they prayed through tears that God might bring healing to their child, Charles offered lyrics that help us to embrace this sort of grief and to not hold back in pouring out our hearts to God.
What were the specific needs of our town, what were the specific passions and gifts of our church members, and how might they converge?