The People Of Neverwhere

(I’m actually posting this on both of my blogs)
 The BBC did a miniseries called “Neverwhere” a number of years ago that was written by Niel Gaiman and Lenny Henry.  It was a very good scifi series that mainly dealt with a fictional underground world in London. One of the lines one of the characters said had to do with how we really never notice people and how quickly we forget about many of the people that we do see, especially those that are homeless.
  As I watched more and more of it, it make me realize how we really don’t notice and ignore those that are homeless. We go about our merry way in our own lives and some will even criticize them saying how they need to get a job, stop living off of the government, that they actually have fancy cars and homes, and how they really need to try harder. For some of the homeless that we do see this is true, but for many they are trying but the truth of the matter is that because they are in truth unseen by most they don’t get the chance to change their situation. 
 People are critical of the unemployment rate during the term of the current President saying that it is higher than what is reported because people have stopped looking for work, when the truth is that  it has always been that way regardless of who that President is. As long as it has been possible, people have tried to live off of the government, in some cases it has been been businesses. Now the businesses that I am referring to are not small ones, but ones making billions of dollars a year in profits. Money like this is going to oil companies and companies that own large and profitable farms among others.
 But yet we as a nation are more concerned about a small group of poor people who are ripping the  government off and not the big businesses that truly can afford to survive quite well without government help. I learned something the other day that I had not realized, that being when Walmart began to get bigger and bigger, their aim was to hire people who only needed to have a little extra income, mainly housewives who were looking for something to do during the day. FedEx  was designed to be for College students to help them have spending money through college. There are many cases like this throughout the country, but things like this have changed because people were not making the money needed to be able to pay for just basic needs to survive.
 We often simply ignore people who clearly need our small change in order to even get something to eat. Now I am not saying that we all should be giving our change to all of those who claim to be homeless and need money, but I am sure that you have seen people sleeping at night in a doorway or elsewhere outside. Why not bring that “doggy bag” of food that you didn’t finish and leave it with them? Think about it and the Bible Story of the Fish & Bread. Think about yourself if you were in that position. I have some friends who carry non-perishable items in their cars and when they come across people begging in traffic for money they give them a small bag of the foods. This has helped some of them when they have had car trouble and a person whom they have help have come over and helped them. I helped to start a weekly lunch program that gave bags of food to those in need at a park. I would take some of the bags to other areas where I knew homeless and needy were and would give them to people there. As the people got to know me, they would talk with me and tell  me their story. Their were those that were addicts, just gotten out of prison and many others, some of  whom would say that when they were in a better position that they would looked down upon those that were homeless.
 I had gone over to San Francisco one evening, and had a box that contained some of the left over lunches and did my usual bit of just walking around. Before I knew it, it had become dark so I decided that I would head back home and give the lunches to the people in the area that I knew were  homeless. With the ones that were in my neighborhood, I knew that many of them ate on a daily basis, but I would give them one as a knew that it could help them stretch their food for a meal longer. As I walked down Market Street (the major road in San Francisco,) I saw people laying in doorways and beside lampposts sleeping. After passing a few it hit me that I had more lunches in my bag than I really needed, so as I would pass someone, I would drop off a bag. Before I knew it I was down to just two bags. I thought about the people in my neighborhood and knew that their were a couple of people who always had a hard time finding something to eat, so I would save those bags for them. As I continued to walk there were a couple of guys pushing a shopping cart full of their possessions. They seemed to be acting a little crazy, and it appeared that most people were stepping as far as possible away from them, but I didn’t as I could tell that they were harmless and that these were just a couple of guys enjoying life even though they were living in the streets. I asked one of them if they were hungry, and he said that he was, so I gave the two of them the last two bags. As I rode home I felt a little bad, for I didn’t have any for the main two people that I was planning on giving the bags to, but figured that I would stop at a place and get them something to eat when I got into the neighborhood. Much to my surprise, when I got home I found the two of them eating a hardy meal. A few weeks later I had to go into San Francisco for something, and as I walked down Market Street, the two guys I had given the bag to walked up to me and thanked me for being so kind and giving them the food.
 I have looked closer into the world that the downtrodden live in, and it is a fascinating world. The barter system us highly used in many ways. Most people think that they are  mainly using the money that they are begging for to buy drugs and alcohol (which some do use the money for,) but much of it is used to buy the basics. Items are traded with each other in order to survive. They are living in a world that many humans either do or have lived in.
 The people in our Neverwhere world take care of each other in that they make sure that for those who don’t cause trouble or problems within it are taken care of . While being in  and around those living in Neverwhere, it makes me wonder what the country would be like if we went and learned from those living there. We have “Experts” in this country who go in and try to “fix” the problems within Neverwhere, but they don’t talk about the things that they have learned from the people in there. The “experts” come in with a preconceived idea on what should be done, but they really aren’t willing to listen to the needs and desires of the people. They aren’t willing to watch and see what really goes on that they can bring to the rest of the country that would truly make things better for all of us. 
 With the group I was with that was doing the lunches each week, we started in many ways like we had  solutions to some of their problems, but once we changed our outlook and began to ask them what they needed, things became great between them and us, in that we became one community. They stopped looking at us as though we were coming to fulfill a need to help the pitiful, but that we looked at them as fellow humans. They would do their best to protect us from the bad events that could and did occur.  At first the police would come by and watch. The police would slowly drive by and look. Finally one day I walked up to one of the officers and explained to him who we were and what we were doing. I didn’t realize as I was walking up that this was a commanding officer, and after I explained things to me he said that he wondered, then thanked us for what we were doing and said that he had wondered why problems had stopped there during the time we were there. He must of informed the others, as they stopped coming by and watching. 
 Some of the people began to turn there life around. Some stopped drinking, doing drugs, committing crimes and would jump up and help us with stuff even though we never asked for it. When kids where there they would make sure that they were the first to be given food, and the same was true with the elderly and physically handicapped. Now think about how often you would see that among those who have wealth.
 So the next time that you find yourself  looking down upon those in Neverwhere, or simply walk past them only to know that you will forget about them real soon, as yourself what you can learn from them that will make you a better person.
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The Same But Different

 My church life has been interesting since moving to a new diocese. My involvement in the church has basically vanished outside of  going to church and sitting in the pews each Sunday, but after going to three or four different services each Sunday along with being in other churches during the week, it actually feels good to just be a “Pew Sitter” each week.
 What I find really interesting now is how I notice things in churches. Well let me put it this way in that I really notice more how different congregations do the same church service. My mom was somewhat amazed that I choose  not to goto her church, but that I choose to go to a church that has a much smaller congregation. For me, the size of the congregation really didn’t matter, but I had learned from a sermon that a priest had given that helped me to understand some as to why we choose the congregations that we attend, and as I think upon things I understand why we can lose people from the church.
 I believe that it was during the last General Convention it was decided to put a committee to “rethink” church and how we do things. In reality this is nothing new as congregations have been thinking about this and doing it for as long as the church has existed. Now I am sure that they will come up with great ideals, but I am hoping that they always remember that having a “one size fits all” conclusion is not the thing to come up with in the end, but I am sure that is what will happen.
 The problem that I see is that the group will come in with “experts” who will basically tell them what to do. Oh sure there will be surveys done, but my belief is that even though they may try to survey all, most Laity will not be informed of what is going on, for in many cases we are a church of solos. I have noticed that many clergy don’t communicate things to there congregation about what is going on outside of it in that they fear that the people might find something that they like better. This is part of the problem, as when youth leave for university elsewhere they come upon new ways, and many times it’s in other denominations. 
 Wondering what they are finding in the other churches? It is real simple in that the Holy Trinity moves them. This is  also the same reason that for many of us were attend the congregation that we do. The congregation that my mom attends is very ceremonial, whereas the congregation that I attend isn’t. Some people need all of the “Smells and Bells” and to feel as they are in an important place, whereas others just need something that is real simple. What I also find is that some are so strong in their convictions on how things should be done, that they do what it takes to force change and think that everyone will see the  ”light” and believe the same way that they do. These people fail to realize that they are driving people away. In the congregation that I was in, in my previous diocese. I watched as someone came in and killed the Spirit of the place. It was sad to watch as more and more people left the place.
 Now I am not saying that change is a bad thing,in fact  I really believe that  change is  healthy for a  place and for the church. My problem is with those who have a vision and are  unwilling to be  open to the visions of others. A vision within a  congregation needs to be the vision of ALL, not just a few. The church will only suffer and become damaged if the vision of the future of the church is not decided by the many, but still each congregation needs to make up its own mind as to its own future ways.
 I also believe that in order for the church to survive, the group that is putting together and thinking about how the church should be in rethinking the church needs to be mostly full of the youth and young adults from within the church. Yes some of the seats need to be reserved for those who have been in the pews for a long time so that we don’t lose all of the traditions that we have, but we must also incorporate new traditions so that the church can survive.
 One thing that I must say is that I have been lucky over the years when it comes to Bishops. I went from one great Bishop who moved me spiritually in ways, to another great Bishop who has moved  me in other ways.
 So tell me, what is it that keeps you in the congregation that you are in?
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It’s Christmas Time In The City

I don’t know for how long this has been on my mind, but it has been for at least the last decade or so. Have we forgotten the meaning of Christmas?
Every year on December 24 & 25, we celebrate the birth of our lord Jesus Christ. We gather with friends and family, exchange gifts, and get involved with all of the hoopla that goes with it, but isn’t the truth is that we celebrate this birth all year long? Seriously. Think about it. Every time that we gather together for our services, what we are doing is celebrating the life of Jesus from birth through death, and his resurrection.
What makes it more interesting is how business has done its best to take this celebration for the reason of making huge amounts of money. Every year on the day after Thanksgiving stores hold what is referred to as “Black Friday” sales. This is a day where after marking the prices to what the suggested pr manufacturers ice, they put this stuff on sale that they really should have been in the first place. The store are opening up on Thanksgiving itself now, the day that we should be with our friends thanking the Holy Trinity our families and friends and families, but it has now and turned into a day where we show in droves that for many their God is Money.
What I do find interesting his how early stores put out their Christmas decorations for us to buy. How often has it been that you have bought any prior to Thanksgiving? One of the major chains started their Christmas push during the summer. They said that they were really pushing the fact that they were bringing back their “Lay Away” department, but the truth of the matter is that their aim is for you to have to come back during Christmas and not only get what you have put away, but to get more money put of you by having you buy more stuff.
Oh sure I know that those of you who may read this may not be Christians and will comment about it, but think about the season and why you go out and spend so much money. In your religious beliefs, what does going out and buying and getting things really mean as far as your religious beliefs are?
I’m going to give you a challenge. I challenge you to give to any Non-Profit organization (like the Episcopal Relief and Development, The Red Cross, The Village Project of San Francisco, or any that you support,) the same amount of money that you spend this time of year for gifts. Now don’t be one of those that says that the Non-Profit that they are going to give it to is themselves, but give it to one that you know will help the homeless, abused, needy, etc. If you get money as gifts, then take 50% of it and give it to a charity.

 I hope and pray that you have a joyous and safe holiday season, and that you are a blessing to others who could truly use your help.
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The Radical Church

 I was born into a family that attended the Episcopal Church, and most likely I will die as a member of the Episcopal Church.
 I felt that I needed to make that statement so that some who may question the things that I say means that I am unhappy with the church. I love going to an Episcopal service, and even though there are other denominations around whose services are similar in style, it doesn’t mean that I desire to attend them.
But over the years that Episcopal Church has had problems in that it has been shrinking in its membership size. Now this is true with many of the long established churches, but I have never really been involved with them in a deeper level.
 Now the church has tried things to get people to attend, but for the most part it has failed. As I think about it, I think one of the reasons has to do with the service and the lessons that are read each week. Seriously. If you were to take a look at the Book Of Common Prayers that it has used, even though a new one will come out every so often that contains changes, the service has really stayed the same. But if one were to look even deeper, one will see that the church has not really changed either. Even though women are now being ordained as they should have been all along, what the church teaches has remained the same with no real things to be thought about.
 Now you may be wondering what I mean by that. The church operates on a 3 year cycle on its calendar. In that cycle the lessons never change. Now with some of the different points in the year, I can understand why the church would want to use the same lessons, as they are fitting. But we are in a time of year right now where things could open up a bunch.
 I think that one of the things that gets people into other denominations and away from the Episcopal and others is that many of them actually go through the entire Bible. Imagine if the Pentecost Season were to be like that. Now I am not saying that each congregation should go out on its own and pick stuff to use, but the national church picks what is read each week in a way that through a period of time takes use through the entire Bible. Now I was lucky in that the Bible Studies that occurred at the congregation that I was in when I lived in the Diocese Of California, the upcoming weeks lessons weren’t used (as it is in many congregations,) but an entire book/letter was chosen by the group and each week they would pick up from where they had left off the previous week. Imagine if the whole church were to use a model like this. Imagine the conversations that will happen under something like this. Imagine Episcopalians actually wanting pick up and read the Bible before church and at other times. But to do so would require change, and change is something that the people of the church seem to fear (both Laity AND Clergy.)
 But sadly I can hear the reasons on why we can’t now. Oh those excuses that would be given. But if the church really wants to grow, it has to make changes that will get some upset, but it is time for the church again having to buy more pews to be able to sit those who come, not to be selling them because nobody is sitting in them.
 So what are some of the ideas that you have that you think will help the growth of the Episcopal Church which are radical? Please post them in the comments here.
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The 1963 March On Washington

 On Wednesday, August 28, 1963 a march was held in Washington, D.C., in the USA. It is one of the most important marches to ever happen in the United States. On Wednesday, August 28, 2013 it will be the 50th anniversary of what happen.
 What do you think this world would be like if this march didn’t happen?
 How much have things changed since the march happened?
 What are some of the things that you do that you think will help change the world?
 Here is a video that I made a few years ago of the day that the “March on Washington For Jobs and Freedom” happened. Hope that you enjoy it.


Please leave your comments in the comment section below.
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Who’s The Boss

 I know that this post will get some mad, but it has been on my mind for the few weeks and I have finally gotten around to writing it.
 I realized not long ago one of the big problems that the Episcopal Church (and other denominations) has, and I really don’t think that we really notice it. It’s sad that it exist, and I am not exactly sure how to solve and change things.
 The problem in the church is that for some of the clergy and the structure of the church is that clergy are looked upon as “Bosses” like Christianity is a business. The truth of the matter is that their really aren’t “bosses” in Christianity. Christianity is a religion that it has no bosses.
 As I think upon what I have seen over the years, and have learned from the history of the church over the last 1,000 years, the church has really restructured itself from what Jesus brought to us. Yes religion does need structure in it so that it can run in the world we have today, but the truth of the matter is that the real true bosses in the church are the Laity. Think about it. A church without people in the pews for services really serves very little purpose.
 I was in a congregation where there was a change of clergy. I sat and watched as those who came into the place had no real desire to listen to the people who were there, as they had their own agenda (this was more of the Laity than the clergy.) As this went on, I noticed fewer and fewer people coming for service and people began to pull me aside and vent as to how the “spirit” that the congregation had when they came and what kept them there was now gone. A number of them began to leave the church. As I tried to have conversations with the clergy, it became very apparent to me that even though they were willing to have the conversation, they (and the Laity who came in) clearly had little desire to do anything to try and keep those who had been there for decades. The last time that I saw any pictures from the congregation I knew that my no longer being there was the best thing for me.
 But I think about the congregation that I am in now, and the other churches in the diocese that I am in now and the clergy that I have dealt with. It seems as though seminaries aren’t reminding those who are going through them that becoming ordained makes one the “Servant Of The People”. 
 I have watched clergy behave as though they are ones with superior knowledge over the Laity because they have a piece of paper that says that they are ordained. It seems as though many of the clergy seem to think that they have become the Chair of a billion dollar company, and treat the Laity as though they were simply employees. 
 What all of this it has helped in the divide that has happened in the church over the last 10 years.  We have been so busy arguing about things with the encouragement of the clergy that we are spending less time trying to spread the Good News that has been brought to us.
 We have become so preoccupied with arguing over who is right and who is wrong, we have forgotten to spend time reading our Bibles and getting an understanding in our own ways as to what God is trying to get into our heads.
 But I am not saying that all of the clergy are like this, as there are many who realize that in reality we are all equals in the eyes of God. These clergy realize that in order for the church to survive, they can’t come across as the boss, and are willing to listen and hear what the Laity is saying and desiring. 
 Until the church as a whole realizes that it needs to rethink who and what it is, and I think to put Christ at the center of all that it does, then the church will begin to grow again. The church needs to stop going into communities thinking that it has all of the answers to save the people, but needs to come into the communities and listen and hear what the people are saying. One place that I know where this works is in Oakland, Ca, with Sacred Space. The people who go there on a regular basis are respected by the community because those who come to the community aren’t coming there with a “we are here to save you” attitude, but the community knows that the people coming are there to work with them to help to solve problems that are going on.
 Who are the true Bosses of Christianity? The Holy Trinity.
 Please leave comments below as to what you think.
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Vengeance Is Mine

 I have been listening and watching the things related to Trayvon Martin over the last week, and I am finding it interesting. Now I thought the jury would come back with Manslaughter, I am not going to say anything wrong with the final verdict, as they are the ones whose opinion is the one that matters most.
 Now the stuff that has been “Monday Morning Quaterbacked” since the announcement has been interesting in the divide that there is. As hard as the press wanted to see a “Race War” start, the fact is that it was something that was never going to occur. But now this “Race War” is not being pushed by the press, it is being pushed harder by talk radio and tv, by both the Conservative and Liberal sides. What I find interesting is that people want to talk about the wrong things that Trayvon was doing, but yet they don’t want to talk about the wrong things that George Zimmerman has done in his past. I have heard people complaining and saying that the Black Community needs to get off of the “Race Card” thing and that the community needs to go put an end to the violence that is going on within the community. They have laid the blame in Trayvon and saying he was a thug. Others are saying that George Zimmerman got away with murder of an unarmed child, and have made death threats towards him.
 Now both side have their valid points, but I find it interesting how many of the people on both sides will then proclaim how much of a Christian that they are. It is really sad to see how people really don’t pay attention to the things that are said in the Bible that they fail to live by.
 In the book of Romans 12:19 it says “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.“ but yet people have made all kinds of threats towards the Zimmerman family. If he lied and is really guilty, then God will punish him for it. I hear people say that we should put things in the hands of the Lord, but yet they continue to fail to do so.
 Jesus said “Let Ye Without Sin Cast The First Stone”. People on the two big sides of the case are so busy casting stones that they have forgotten to look inside of themselves. We all have and will continue to sin in some way, and the possibility is that one of what we think of a very tiny sin will be far worse in God’s eyes than anything than either Trayvon and George ever did.
 Being a Christian is not an easy thing, but one thing that we need to do is to try and put an end to the sins that we each commit. We are so busy trying to point out the wrongs of others that we fail to see or own.
Regardless of how you feel about the final verdict, pray for Trayvon’s Family and George’s Family, as I think that is something that Jesus would have us do…

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A Hidden Influence

 Even though I know what the job of a Bishop is, I never really realized how much influence that a Bishop can have over ones life in the ways that one thinks. But this is something that I have just recently realized happens. Now I know that it all isn’t because of the Bishop, but this Bishop came to mind when I noticed something in the congregation that I have been attending lately.

 When I first met Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop of the Diocese of California, there was just something about him that I knew would make a difference in the lives of the congregations in the diocese. Now I was rooting for someone else to win the Election for Bishop, but I knew that he was going to win the election.
 One of the things that Bishop Marc talked about when he came in, and even to this day and into the future is about the ecology of this world, and how important it is that we take care of this planet that God has given for us to care for. He has been insistent on the congregations using products and materials that are recyclable and renewable, and has now only talked about it, but has implemented this into the office of the diocese.
 To be truthful, I was very skeptical about this happening, and mostly the congregations doing it, but as time went on, sure enough I noticed more and more congregations switching. Over time even I was doing this at home. Instead of buying Styrofoam cops and plates, I would buy the paper ones and/or the ones that were marked that they could be recycled in some way.
 What was really nice is that the youth of one of the congregations had a proposal brought forth before the Diocesan Convention wanting every congregation to replace at least one of the lightbulbs tot he newer style that saves energy. Even though I heard people complain about the proposal, it past with ease. Now this wasn’t a problem in the congregation that I was in, as we had pretty much replaced all of the ones that we could with the new style anyway, but I noticed when I went into other congregations that they had replaced more than just the one, but all that they could.

 I recently moved to another diocese, and have gone to a couple of congregations. It was while I was at the one that I currently attend that I realized the effect that Bishop Marc has had on me. I’m living in a diocese that is hot and dry, and I went to get a cup of water out of the water-cooler. I reached to pull down a cup and felt the styrofoam. The thought that this wasn’t right came across my mind, but when I looked, sure enough I had a styrofoam cup in my hand. It had been a few years since the last time that I drank out of one of these. I put some water in it and began to drink. As I was drinking the water, it was then that I realized that I was really uncomfortable with what I was doing, and that it was because of Bishop Marc.
 As I thought about what had happened, I then began to think about the choices and ways that Bishops can and do influence each and every one of us. I’m not talking just about Episcopal Bishops, but Bishops of all denominations. Bishops influence the ways that we think and act. Sure some get us thinking and acting in ways that in my opinion is not in how the Holy Trinity would want for us to be and how we act, but I think that for the most part all clergy try to get us to walk in the way of the Holy Trinity.

 I want to thank Bishop Marc for having a positive influence on me when it comes to the ecology of this world. If I should choose to remain in the congregation that I am in (which is likely,) I am going to do my best to try and get them to do things that will not hurt this planet and to make other choices (they do some things that are good, but they could be better,) and it will come because of the influence of Bishop Marc. I hope and pray that more and more congregations throughout God’s Church really think and change so they they are helping to save this planet that the God has left for us to care for.

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King of the Diocese

 I recently moved from one diocese to another where I visited a church that got me thinking about something, and it troubles me. Now in the diocese that I was in, I was seeing it less and less, but it still existed and I am not sure if it will ever go away for another 10 years at the earliest.
 After service, one of the questions that I asked was what Ministries the congregation has. For me, this has become something that is important to me in figuring out what congregation I choose to join. Yeah I could join the biggest congregation, but to tell you the truth, I find that big congregations aren’t my thing, as they seem to want to dominate over the other congregations.
 Now the answer to the question is one for some reason didn’t surprise me. I am sure that if I were to ask most smaller congregations I would get basically the same answer just put in different ways. The answer that I got was basically naming a couple if ministries, but also saying that the bigger ministries they are involved in were being run by bigger congregations. Now there is nothing hugely wrong with this, but I think that it takes away from the smaller congregations to be able to grow.
 There has been talk of changes in the way that we in the Episcopal Church does things, and I think that one of the changes that has to be done is to push for smaller congregations to take the lead in the different ministries that are done in a diocese. If we want to truly have things come from the grassroots of the church, then we need to get the smaller congregations to take the lead in things.
 Sure the big congregations will want to take control talking about all of the experience and expertize that they have, but if they aren’t willing to let others take the lead in things, then the smaller churches will continue to struggle as they won’t have things to attract people through its doors. If we don’t let the smaller ones take the lead then we will miss out on the chance of letting people who have great skills bring new ideas and ways that will benefit the church and Christianity as a whole.
 I found it sad in ways watching what happened in the congregation that I was in when a change in clergy occurred. People came into the church with their own ideas on what should happen there and really didn’t care what the people who had been there for decades desired. While agendas were pushed by those coming in, those who had been there have watched and are leaving. One of the things that was noticed is that people from bigger congregations were being brought in for stuff that if asked of those who were there could of given them answers to in different things, but reinventing the wheel appeared to be more important.
 Now I am sure that what has happened in this one congregation is something that has and is happening in other congregations. It makes me wonder how many people with wonderful ideas and expertise in things that will help the church grow who are not being given the chance because others have their own vision and not willing to be open to new ways and ideas. But this is also true in many ways of the big congregations when it comes to ministries that are done.
 If the church is going to survive, then it will take dioceses to celebrate the ministries that are done in the smaller congregations and to make them not only shine, but they must be celebrated. This will also mean that the smaller congregations will have to step up and not rely on the larger ones to direct what is done. This will mean that smaller congregations should work together in building mutual ministries that lift both congregations and will hopefully give the bigger congregations new visions on what and how they do new ministries. I think of congregations like St. Cyprian’s in San Francisco and St. Cuthbert’s in Oakland, Ca which have some great ministries going on, but for the most part people within their diocese just don’t see what is going on with them.
 Hopefully what ever congregation that I do end up in, they will be doing ministries that are nothing short of helping to help more of the world know of the greatness of the Holy Trinity.

 So I would like for you leave comments in this blog about the ministries that you and your congregation have going on and how you feel that the smaller congregations can become stronger and bigger.

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The Silent War

Now I am sure that some people will claim that this really isn’t happening, but the more that I think about it, the more that it seems so true.
 A few years ago, I started asking some of my non-Christian friends why they went Christmas shopping since Christmas is a Christian Holiday. I would hear all kinds of reasons, and most of them said that they weren’t celebrating Christmas, but the Holidays. Now a friend of mine, who happens to follow the Wiccan beliefs, actually spent some time and gathered some information that explained the Wiccan connection to this day. They presented some great information, and it was enough for me to understand. I then found some great documentaries that talked about the history of Christmas, so between those I understand. But things have come along which has really bothered me.
 It seems as though the world has this silent war against Christianity. This is a war that people don’t seem to realize we really haven’t paid any attention to, and it is one that is diluting Christianity. Seriously, Satan has found a way to get us to forget about following Jesus without us noticing. Rev. Dr Martin Luther King, Jr., St Valentine, St Patrick…. Think about it and what has happened.  
 Have you noticed over the years that the “Reverend” part of Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. seems to be vanishing? It seems as though we are losing out and trying to forget that he was a Christian. This has nothing to do with racism, and I will explain why not below. Think about it. Here is someone whose speech the night before his assassination gave one of his most famous speeches that was clearly a Christian Sermon, gave many of this speeches in churches, but quietly the fact that he was a Christian seems to be vanishing from being related to him. St Valentine’s Day…
 Like many other Christian Saints, we have a day to celebrate this Saint. Well let me correct myself on this. St Valentine’s Day actually celebrates 3 Christians named Valentine. Have you noticed how the “Saint” part has been getting dropped like the “Reverend” part in Rev King’s name has been? Like Christmas and all of the material stuff surrounding it, I really wonder what all of the material stuff surrounding this day has to do with this Christian observance? Now St Patrick has been lucky in that evil hasn’t figured out how to drop the “Saint” part of the name, but evil seems to of make it more palatable to the rest of the world in that it has brought forth people drinking Green Beer and other stuff that surrounds the day. What does going out and getting drunk have to do with St Patrick? Think about it.
 Oh I can go on, but I am really wondering what is going on in that we seem to be permitting evil to dilute Christianity? This doesn’t seem to be happening in other religions as far as I know, but when are we Christians going to open our eyes as to what is going on? Isn’t it time that we rebel and stop business from causing us to worship money over God by stopping spending our monies on a day like St Valentine’s Day and other days? Shouldn’t the Love that so many give towards each other on St Valentine’s Day be not only on one day, but every day?
 Would lover to read your comments….
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