The Parable of the Rich Fool
Well, I am sure that there are some of you sitting here in the church and some of you watching from home, who have storage units – that you rent storage units. You pay a monthly fee, month after month, to store your possessions that you don't have room for in your house. Then there are others of us who have attics and garages and outbuildings that are filled with belongings and possessions we don't even know that we have, we haven't used them in years. And maybe we'll never even use them again for the rest of our lives, but we're still holding on to them.
Teach Us How to Pray
Well as I just read for you in the Gospel reading today, for the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, the disciples asked Jesus, “Rabbi, teach us how to pray.” Now, do you remember who taught you to pray? I'm assuming for most of you, it was your parents who taught you how to pray when you were a little child. Most of us as kids were taught to kneel at the side of our bed before we went to sleep at night, to press our hands together, and to talk to an old man who lived up in the clouds, and to ask him for things and to ask him for help.
Human Doing? Or Human Being?
Well, we're going to begin this morning with a little bit of show and tell. This poster hangs over in our Friendship Hall. It says “Beyond Sunday Morning,” and it lists all of our outreach groups or mission groups. We here at Douglas UCC call them our spiritually active groups, and we have seven of them. I'm so proud of these groups, and all of you who are part of these groups, for all of the work that you are doing out in the community, to care for the environment, to work for social justice, and to help our neighbors who are in need.
Who is My Neighbor?
The very last movie that I saw in an actual movie theater was before the pandemic. It was the 2019 movie called Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. And it starred Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers, who most of us grew up knowing as Mr. Rogers, from the beloved PBS children's program, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.
Separation of Church and State
I was so honored and excited to learn this week that I have been selected as an official delegate at the UCC National Synod, which is going to be held next summer in Indianapolis. It's going to be the very first in-person, national gathering of the United Church of Christ since before the pandemic.