THIS SUNDAY: July 15, 4 p.m. Gathering and Worship at Rose City Park Presbyterian Church 1907 NE 45th Avenue – Portland, OR.
Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Gallivanter, Jaywalkers, Gadabout, People of the Way, Family Members and Friends:
Willamette Week’s “Best of Portland” came out the other day, and while we are not listed under the “Best New Presbyterian Fellowship that Began in 2017” category (no one is, phew), we have been around for almost a year (yeah!), and all of you are marvelous and lovely in supporting this new movement of God’s Spirit in Portland, OR! Yes!
The focus Scripture of this newsletter today is this week’s lectionary passage from the Epistles, Ephesians 1:3-14. The writer lays out before us God’s plan for us and all creation, in a trinitarian fashion, calling out God and “Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us,” while also reminding us that are marked “with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit.” In other words, not to sound too eerily like televangelists, God has a plan that is unfolding right before our very eyes, if we take the time to notice, in which we are part of the marvelous unity in Christ Jesus. The plan may be an ancient one, rooted long before the earth was created, but it stretches forward too, far into the future, and we have a place within it, in this time and moment of God’s story. So, when I read this comment by Stephen Mattson on Facebook, “Sometimes, being a good Christian meant being a bad Roman. So before you accuse people of being unpatriotic, ask yourself which empire they’re actually serving,” I was reminded that, first, we are heirs who have received the blessings of God as part of God’s realm of love. That’s who we serve. And, secondly, we are ancestors with an eye on all that will come after us in the Spirit’s grace-filled purpose for all of creation. Or as Bob Dylan reminds us, “You’ve got to serve somebody.” Just know which empire we are serving…
Sunday, July 15, 2018, Pastor Chris will preach in Estacada in the morning.
Sunday, July 15, 2018, 4-6 pm, Gathering and Worship with Community of Pilgrims;
Thursday, July 26-28, 2018, Pastor Brett will be at the national Reconciling Convocation, with many of my LGBTQ and allies UMC friends in St. Louis, MO;
Sunday, July 29, 2018, Pastor Brett will preach at Trinity UMC in Toledo, OR in the morning.
Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018, 10:00 am, Pastor Brett preaching at Calvin Presbyterian Church in Tigard, OR.
Wed., Aug. 8, 7 pm, Steering/Guide Team, Chris’ home.
Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018, 9:30 and 11:00 am, Pastor Brett will be preaching at First Presbyterian
Church, Salem, OR.
*Possibility: seeing “Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far On Foot,” the life of John Callahan, a Portlander, filmed by Gus Van Sant, another Oregonian, at Cinema 21. Stay tuned!
*For the Children of Asylum Seekers, housed at the Morrison Center in Portland, OR: Last Sunday, July 8, we chose to purchase items for the young people, between the ages of 12-17, and let the Center distribute them. They would like Spanish books, board games like dice, dominoes, balls, arts and craft supplies, yarn, and beads. Bring the “stuff” with you on Sunday, July 15, 2018! And thanks!
*Regarding the t-shirts: Please pick up your t-shirt this Sunday, and bring cash or a check made out to Community of Pilgrims, in the amount of $8 for adult M,L, and XL, and youth; and $12 for adult 2XL. Thank you!
*Opportunity to discuss and act: From Pastor Linda at Colonial Heights Presbyterian Church: “If your folks would be interested in fixing a dinner for the kids from Warm Springs as they are here in the NW College of Construction program-- let me know. Opportunities will be S-Th dinners from July 8-August 8.” Let’s discuss Sunday!
Vacation, by Rita Dove
I love the hour before takeoff,
that stretch of no time, no home
but the gray vinyl seats linked like
unfolding paper dolls. Soon we shall
be summoned to the gate, soon enough
there’ll be the clumsy procedure of row numbers
and perforated stubs—but for now
I can look at these ragtag nuclear families
with their cooing and bickering
or the heeled bachelorette trying
to ignore a baby’s wail and the baby’s
exhausted mother waiting to be called up early
while the athlete, one monstrous hand
asleep on his duffel bag, listens,
perched like a seal trained for the plunge.
Even the lone executive
who has wandered this far into summer
with his lasered itinerary, briefcase
knocking his knees—even he
has worked for the pleasure of bearing
no more than a scrap of himself.
Pastors Brett & Chris
Rev. Dr. Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; email@example.com Rev. Chris Dungan (503) 724-7060; firstname.lastname@example.org