Sunday was an emotional day for me – preaching about Jesus as servant and making a huge announcement -
I have accepted a call to serve as Senior Pastor at University Christian Church in Hyattsville, MD.
It’s not easy to leave a people and place that you love. I am still very passionate about the Table and about East Dallas Christian Church. It really is an amazing bunch of folks who are working hard to make a difference in our community. The mission of this congregation will continue on without me, possibly in new directions as God continues to shape and lead them.
The good news is that Rev. Douglass Anne Cartwright will be stepping up to continue to lead our worship as a community. She is also going to lend her presence, along with Bob Hearne, at our Faith in the City pub ministry. The radical invitation to join Christ at the welcome table will be shared each and every week at 629 N. Peak and around the neighborhood.
My last Sunday will be September 30. In addition to a reception on that day, there will be other opportunities throughout the week to celebrate what God has done and continues to do through our community. God is still good – God is still sending us to share the good news and bring others to join the celebration. I am grateful to have shared in this awesome work.
I’ll be sharing more reflections and hopes in the weeks to come. See you soon!
Here’s some clips from our most recent worship service. My sermon begins at the 16 minute mark. I hope it connects with you, since I am aware that a lot of Christians make their religion out to be something far more serious than what Jesus made of it. Yes, we need to take our faith seriously as we live it out and try to bring compassion to our world, but Jesus also seemed to know when to laugh and let loose. That’s part of the human experience too!
Anyway, please enjoy some bad jokes and theological thoughts:
I have another article up on DMergent today. Please check it out.
Some of my deepest rooted religious ideas come from my childhood. I bet this is true of most of us. It’s why I’ve had experienced ministry mentors tell me that if a church has a strong children program, those kids will likely come back to church later in life because of those warm feelings brought on by cotton ball sheep, fuzzy shepherds, and tender safety. I think my mentors have partly been right – the lessons about faith that we receive from our family, neighbors, mentors, and tradition help set the stage for how many of us come to understand and realize the importance of the spiritual journey, for better and for worse.
Read more here: http://dmergent.org/2012/05/24/priesthood-of-all-believers/
Rev. Douglass Anne and I sat down for a conversation about her background in theater and performance and how it intersects with her journey in theology. Do church and theater have lots in common? How do they feed each other? How do they challenge one another?
We are blessed to have Douglass Anne share her gifts through the Table community. She has a lot to offer, including words and movement and voice that inspire and challenge. If you are looking for a community that seek ways to intersect our various gifts in the spiritual journey, join us at the Table. We’d love to hear your questions and ideas too.
Here’s the video I promised a few days back. I really appreciate John’s work and his leadership at the Table. I know that we will see some from fruits from this work, not just at the Table, but in some other communities. John has a tremendous vision for collaboration with God and with neighbors that might give a lot of us who belong to a church a new sense of direction in our work to make a difference in the world. I hope you enjoy some of the questions and ideas raised in our short conversation.
And note – the audio isn’t the best in the world, though I worked with it as best as I could. We’ll definitely use a different space to record our conversation next time.
If you have questions for John or me, ask away in the comments below. Does your vision of God allow room for collaboration and co-creation?