Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A Guide toWhat Matters Most to Christians-New Homily Series

On Sunday, September 25th, 2011, our congregation will embark on an exciting seven-week journey. It is my intention to begin a seven week series of sermons in our worship services which will hopefully help us further engage the gift of the Christian faith.  This series is called “A Guide to What Matters Most to Christians.”  I will explore what “moderate” Christianity holds as both unnecessary and necessary for us to hold fast to in our rapidly changing times.

For example, I will examine some of the things we do not need to hold on to as we call ourselves followers of Jesus: We do not need to believe that “good” Christians do not doubt.  Or, that it is OK for Christians to be judgmental and obnoxious about it at the same time.  But that will only be a short part of the series.  What is far more important is the wonderful system of belief centered on Jesus Christ we Christians have to share with each other and the world; that we have greatly promising answers to some of this life’s most challenging questions and profound difficulties. 

During the series I will look at some of the hardest questions we all have to face, such as, “What matters most in this life of ours?   Where is God?  Why is there suffering? And is there hope?”  There will be other questions and ideas as well but I hope you get the gist of things here.

My desire is for us, as we begin our church year, to help clarify what it is we have to offer each other and our neighbours as a Christian Church.  I see this as a wonderful opportunity to remind ourselves of just who we are as Jesus’ followers in the Anglican Tradition.  And, I hope, to share that in an accessible manner with others who are just as thirsty as we are for the kind of helpful answers that can support us as we face life’s toughest questions.

You have a part in this. 

You can invite family members, friends, neighbors, and co-workers to visit our church during the seven week series.  Share with them what you love about your faith and St. Barnabas and tell them we are doing something special that you think will be of interest above and beyond our “business as usual” Sundays.  To that end the services will be modified somewhat to accommodate those who may be new to church, with an emphasis on making them feel at home.
To help clarify things here is a sample of each Sunday’s topic:
            Week1: (Don’t!) Gimme That Ol’-time Religion
            Week 2: Jesus’ Priority: What Matters Most?  (Jesus!)
            Week 3: Jesus’ Grace: Am I Accepted?
            Week 4: Jesus’ Work: Where is God?
            Week 5: Jesus’ Example: What Brings Fulfillment?
            Week 6: Jesus’ Death: What About Suffering?
            Week 7: Jesus’ Resurrection: Is There Hope for Us?

I am excited about this series, our worship services, and what we will offer to others.  I look forward to this special time together.

Please contact me if you have any questions.
 It’s a privilege and joy to be a part of this!
 In Christ’s love and service,

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