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EDOLA Blog

Forward Day By Day – November 20, 2018

Does this framing verse sound familiar? I hope so. This psalm is one of the hymns at the beginning of the Morning Office in The Book of Common Prayer. It begins the day, sets the tone, and focuses us on the true reality in which we live—joy at the heart of the...

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Forward Day By Day – November 19, 2018

Wednesday afternoon from three to five is my favorite time of the week. That’s when our parish’s after-school club meets to give choral instruction, teach the faith, and help with schoolwork for more than twenty elementary-school age children.Recently, our faith topic...

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Forward Day By Day – November 18, 2018

As I type these words, the church’s tower bells ring out the noon hour. I wait patiently for a random hymn played on the carillon. This happens every day at noon, and it never gets old. I’m excited, trying to guess what the hymn of the day will be.Today, as the bells...

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Thanksgiving Services 2018

Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those who harvest them. Make us, we pray, faithful stewards of your great bounty, for the provision of our necessities and the relief of all who are in...

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Forward Day By Day – November 17, 2018

I work every day in a religious tradition that tries to plot a middle way faithfully through a complex life. I know firsthand how difficult the course can be. Yet for many, drawing a hard line is an easy path to take.Sometimes, the Christian advice to the world reads...

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Forward Day By Day – November 16, 2018

Sometimes I feel like I live in the most divided time in history. I know this is not true; it just seems like it because reminders of division stare me in the face every day. This is both the light and dark side of instant global communication. While I’m thankful I...

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Forward Day By Day – November 15, 2018

When I think about salvation, I usually reflect on what it means for human beings. The vast majority of faith formation rightly focuses on human life and how over time we can conform and are transformed by the indwelling work of God. Joel helps us expand this vision...

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Forward Day By Day – November 14, 2018

My college roommate and his family were shepherds. They owned a ranch and had other livestock, but their primary herd was sheep. During summer breaks, I spent time on the ranch. Daytime chores included tending to sheep that had their heads stuck in fences and other...

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Forward Day By Day – November 13, 2018

“What idols do you worship?” I asked during a Bible study. We had been talking about Elijah and the prophets of Baal. One of the folks in the study commented that there weren’t any idol worshipers left. I pulled my wallet out of my pocket and placed it on the table....

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Forward Day By Day – November 12, 2018

A parent once shared with me an edict from her child’s sports coach. The coach required attendance at practice every Sunday morning from March until the end of May. When the parent asked if this included Easter Sunday and Mother’s Day, the coach questioned this...

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Forward Day By Day – November 11, 2018

“Taking care of number one” is the first rule of the zero-sum game. If someone else is gaining in success or power or control, then I must be losing. This sounds absolutely stupid when said out loud, and yet whole economic systems are built on the idea that resources...

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Forward Day By Day – November 10, 2018

We like to judge more than we like to reconcile. From religion to politics, from education to immigration, we are usually far more interested in assigning blame than looking for healing. This is not a problem unique to our place in history—it seems to have been the...

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Forward Day By Day – November 9, 2018

What do I do when confronted with something I don’t understand? Do I flee or fight? Do I acquiesce or seek out understanding? Fleeing or fighting is easier than considering my other options. They require nothing of me other than to operate out of some primal...

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Forward Day By Day – November 8, 2018

The woman sitting across from my desk asked, “What does sanctification mean? In the simplest of terms possible, please.” Normally this would not be a difficult question to answer, considering I’m a priest with a few decades of parish experience. What made this...

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Forward Day By Day – November 7, 2018

In the waning years of this decade, wild fires have devastated communities from the Great Smoky Mountains in the East to the Cascades on the West Coast of the United States and many places in between. With the loss of life and property caused by these fires, it’s easy...

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Forward Day By Day – November 6, 2018

We are offered two ways to use the psalms in our daily lives of prayer. The psalms are listed in the Daily Office lectionary (and in the daily readings printed at the top of each reflection in Forward Day by Day). If you are attentive to this, you can make it through...

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Forward Day By Day – November 5, 2018

Roy never came to church. He was the town craftsman and a superb cabinetmaker. His mother was a cornerstone in the parish, but her son found communion with the Creator by working with his hands. Anytime the church needed something built, Roy was the one to see.My...

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Forward Day By Day – November 4, 2018

The saints of God persevere in the face of adversity. The story of Ruth, begun in our Old Testament reading today, highlights this core characteristic.Ruth is a foreigner, and a wife taken in time of famine and exile. When her husband dies, Ruth’s mother-in-law,...

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Forward Day By Day – November 3, 2018

Jesus is clear: where our treasure is, our heart will be also. I always seem to get these mixed up. If only I could get this…then that would happen. If only my intentions were right, then I could do better. As I reflect on the lives of the saints of Go....(View this...

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Forward Day By Day – November 2, 2018

“You mean I’ll see my grandmother again someday?” The totally amazed child who spoke these words was preparing for baptism—along with her mother—and attending an after-school program hosted by my parish. The group had been discussing All Souls’ Day and life after...

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Forward Day By Day – November 1, 2018

At times I have pictured the saints like superheroes. They may not have invisible jets or capes like Wonder Woman or Superman, but for me, saints are incredible and exotic. Occasionally I see glimpses of truth, like on a cold, wet, January day in 2014, when I gathered...

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2018 CMA Grant Recipients

by the Rev. John Pitzer, CMA Committee Co-Chair Let Love Open the Door, was the theme this year for the Community Mission Appeal. CMA, is a grant program to assist specific ministries in the diocese who are in need of financial assistance. The funds are raised from...

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Forward Day By Day – October 31, 2018

Several years ago, a friend and I had begun a discussion, which in turn became a debate and soon disintegrated into an argument. After several minutes of verbal attack, we all but dismantled a friendship of many years’ standing. I no longer recall the subject of our...

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Forward Day By Day – October 30, 2018

Some scholars believed this psalm was composed when Solomon’s temple was dedicated and the Ark of the Covenant placed in the most holy place. This is an appealing theory, although there is little historic evidence to support it. This psalm is, however, appointed for...

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Forward Day By Day – October 29, 2018

Before I stepped into cold and snowy mornings to walk to school, my mother made sure I had eaten a hot, nourishing breakfast. She also fed me reminders about being on good behavior and working well. Swaddled in her love, I left the house fortified in body and...

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Forward Day By Day – October 28, 2018

What are the identifying characteristics of faith? How do we recognize faith when we are in its presence? In this story from Mark, we encounter someone who has and is impelled by great faith.Nothing is expected of Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, nor does he expect...

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Forward Day By Day – October 27, 2018

This parable has much to teach us about what constitutes hospitality, social obligation, and honor. Even if it is not because of friendship but rather self-interest, the neighbor ultimately responds to his needful friend’s relentless request.When my friend of longest...

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Forward Day By Day – October 26, 2018

When Susan Boyle took the stage on the competition “Britain’s Got Talent” several years ago, many rolled their eyes, and some snickered. Even one of the judges did not hide his doubtful expression. The woman at the microphone was forty-eight years old, with frizzy...

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Forward Day By Day – October 25, 2018

As a child, my neighbors were mostly folks who were African-American and Protestant, just like me. I now live in a neighborhood full of various ethnicities and faiths. My understanding of who my neighbors are has changed.The lawyer who challenges Jesus before the...

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Forward Day By Day – October 24, 2018

“Wait until we get home,” my mother would say when I misbehaved in public. Once we arrived at the house, a prolonged silence often preceded punishment. The tension of those silences was worse than the actual punishments.God is always trying to get our attention and...

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Forward Day By Day – October 23, 2018

Few fictional characters so fully embody wickedness, sin, and scorn as that of Screwtape in C.S. Lewis’s classic The Screwtape Letters. Screwtape mentors his nephew in securing the damnation of a British man, known only as “the Patient.” Screwtapes are everywhere,...

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Forward Day By Day – October 22, 2018

Ben Sira writes Ecclesiasticus at a time when many Jews are becoming aware of Hellenic (Greek) culture but are still committed to their Jewish roots, including the study of Torah. Ben Sira is particularly concerned about young people, who seem attracted to the Greek...

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Forward Day By Day – October 21, 2018

James and John want a piece of the glory Jesus will attain. They eagerly affirm willingness to endure the suffering and death awaiting Jesus, but without understanding that “the cup” and “the baptism” Jesus speaks of are the inevitable and necessary steps preceding...

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Forward Day By Day – October 20, 2018

There is a cinematic quality to this episode in Acts, with Paul expounding day and night before large numbers of Jewish elders, trying to persuade them to accept Christ. Much like in the parable of the sower, a portion of the seed Paul disperses to his listeners falls...

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Forward Day By Day – October 19, 2018

When Jesus prays, momentous things occur. After Jesus’ baptism, the Holy Spirit descends on him while he prays (Luke 3:21-22); Jesus selects the twelve apostles after an entire night spent in prayer (6:12-16); and Peter’s confession of Jesus as the Messiah takes place...

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