by Rev. Beth Givens
This week I celebrated the sacrament of Holy Communion twice in 24 hours. That’s not normal on a non-Sunday, and for a good United Methodist like me, I’m up to celebrating 4 times this week.
Seems we are needing a lot of Jesus.
Tuesday night, when I celebrated, it was a part of Election Day Communion. Election Day Communion is a movement among churches of different denominations to draw people together amidst the divisiveness of an election season here in the United States. We offered Election Day Communion in our congregation.
Monkeys and Crocodiles Play Baseball, Angel Krishna, Global Publishing Group, 2015.
This is a fun, little book for children about a group of monkeys who are playing baseball. It’s what they do every Sunday afternoon. But one Sunday there were no coconuts to be found. They couldn’t play baseball without a coconut to use as their ball.
The only solution to their dilemma is to go to the other side of the island to get more coconuts, which means crossing the river. But they cannot cross the river with help from the crocodiles. The crocodiles see the monkeys coming and know that they are going to ask for help to get across the river. Continue reading
Burning Bush 2.0: How Pop Culture Replaced the Prophet, Paul Asay, Abingdon Press, 2015
The title is what caught my eye. If you know me, or have been reading this blog for a while, you know that I like pondering the intersection of faith and pop culture. So, I was interested in Asay’s take, especially in his take on how pop culture has replaced the prophet.
In each chapter, Asay writes on a theme, weaving in different elements of pop culture. For example, one of the chapters deals with call (the burning bush connection) and Asay uses illustrations from various superhero films. Along the way, he makes valid points about why we should expand our thinking enough to hear what God may be saying to us through pop culture.
Happy are people who make peace because they will be called God’s children. (Matthew 5:9, Common English Bible)
There have been a lot of troubling images out of the city of Baltimore.
These images of violence fill our TV and computer screens. And let’s be honest, they are a bit more than we can handle. The tension in our society over justice for all people seems to have collided in the streets.
Questions are being raised by many, especially those in the church, as to how we should respond. What does justice look like? What role does the church play in such discussions? Where is God calling us to be a part of this?