Recent Blogs

Happy New Year!

Pastor Greta and Pastor JimThis is the time of year we often focus on fresh starts - perhaps in diet or exercise, perhaps in tackling new projects, or setting new goals. And it can also be a time of "fresh starts" in our spiritual lives.

We will start off 2016 with a "Covenant Renewal Service" on Sunday, January 3 at each of our worship services - 8:15, 9:30, and 11:00 a.m.

The Covenant Renewal Service has been used by Wesleyan-related churches for over 200 years. This traditional service helps us to reflect on the year past, recommit ourselves to God in the year ahead and return to a life of integrity, service and joy in the world. Our scripture for the day is Matthew 2:1-12, the account of the wise men's journey to find Jesus, and Pastor Jim's message will be "Interpretive Understanding."

We hope to see you Sunday - the first Sunday in 2016!

- Pastors Jim and Greta

Sharing the light of Christ

Christmas Day is just a week away and while this realization brings delight to the younger people among us, the older people may be experiencing anxiety or even panic!

One of our local publications recently published an article titled "7 Tips to Help You Get Through Christmas" (which, truth be told, was actually a pretty helpful article). This article picked up the sense we have regarding the expectations we attach to Christmas so that it is requirement to be completed rather than a promise to be lived.

Toward a larger life

Advent is the hoping and waiting for the coming of Christ. Jesus has carved our names beside his into the trunk of a tree. Jesus is kneeling beside us, whispering into our memory and imagination to a life that he has searched us out for and made possible for us to enter.

This Sunday, we will sing

Once again, we will be gathering for worship on Sunday morning with devastating news from the week weighing deeply in our hearts - this time from the violence and taking of life in San Bernardino, California.

Life Giving Ministry

This Sunday at all three services, we will welcome Deacon Wes Dorr and lay leader Sabrina Bermingham from the United Church of Rogers Park, our sister church in Chicago with which we have an on-going connection of supportive giving and annual mission trips. We have an additional connection in that former DGFUMC member Rev. Catiana McKay has been the pastor at Rogers Park since 2007.

Toss the Cloak

This Sunday I will be giving a short reflection on Mark: 10 46-52 where Jesus meets up with Bartimaeus who was a blind beggar.

Mark tells this story in which those who are the professional holy people, those who have most exposure to Jesus and his teaching, and those who have the most money and status, all fall away and are all supplanted by this solitary blind beggar, who alone does exactly what Jesus wants - he "follows him on the way."

Here and Loving It

Dear Friends and Family,

Sorry for the long absence of newsletters. Now that our restaurant, Pan America, is thriving, we burn about 70 hours a week just running the shop - it's just the two of us plus a helper. On slow days and "free" days, we clean and restock, dash to La Paz - a five-hour ride - for ingredients we can't get in Copa, tend to mission projects, squeeze in music classes and practice time, attend mandatory neighborhood work days, as well as mandatory meetings, parades and soccer games.

All Saints' Day

What's the difference between All Saints' Sunday and All Souls' Sunday? - two stories that all of us live in and aspire from.

Come join us this Sunday as all three services celebrate those persons who have died and are now dancing in joy, as well as celebrating the Sacrament of Holy Communion. I will be giving a very short reflection on these two stories that we all live between and toward.

The Gift of Being Together

This Sunday, October 25, we will focus on being together as a congregation. We'll be sharing in one of our Together @ 10 services, where the 9:30 and 11:00 congregations get a chance to worship, sing, pray, laugh and ponder together. Our worship, on this Choir Dedication and Commitment Sunday, will be a special time of celebration, as we receive music from all of our choirs, and dedicate our gifts to God for the year ahead through our financial pledges and service interest sheets.

God's Gift in Our Hands

One of the gifts of being sequestered at home for a couple of weeks after surgery, unable to drive, was that I could indulge in lots of quiet reading and pondering time. It brought me a surprising amount of joy to still be in my robe, sipping coffee and reading, when Jim left for the church office each morning.

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