For the past several years I have spent one week every summer serving as camp chaplain for Montlure Presbyterian Camp. I like to tell people that Montlure is like a boot camp for preachers---three sermons a day delivered to high school aged kids. Kids are a tough audience; not because their expectations are really high, but because they don't hesitate to let you know when you missed the mark with them. High schoolers want (they need) a message that speaks genuinely to their lives. That means understanding the pressures and challenges that they face. I may think I understand them because I was once their age, but that is always a dangerous assumption to make about anyone. Assuming we understand all the challenges people face, no matter what age, can lead to a message that sounds condescending. Nothing shuts communication off quicker than that.
The key to effective preaching is listening, listening, listening. As the restrictions have been lifted and I have been able to meet more and more of you, I have had the blessed opportunity to listen. That alone will make my preaching better than any textbook or training seminar. Preaching is a conversation among God's Spirit, the text, the preacher and the congregation. I may be the one behind the pulpit, but it's the lives of the people interacting with the Scriptures that informs the sermon.
This Thursday I leave for my week at preaching boot camp. I will come back having gained a refresher course in listening and letting the Spirit speak after a year of preaching blind. Please keep me and the kids in your prayers. This year, there is a lot that they need me to hear.
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Mickey Finn preaching this Sunday
Worship this Sunday
This Sunday the Rev. Mickey Fenn will be our guest preacher. Mickey is the pastor of The Way Station worshiping community and a good friend of this congregation. Her sermon is titled "Beatitude Living."
We will also have a guest accompanist, Daniel Newman-Lessler. Daniel is an incredible musician and since he is a pianist, we will be able to sing the hymns live rather than from a recording. All of this has the makings for a great Sunday at church!
Slideshow of Grads this Sunday
This Sunday, June 6, is Graduate Sunday. Come see who is graduating and where they are heading! St. Andrew's supports all of our hardworking graduates! Congratulations!
Congregational Meeting to Elect Church Officers
There will be a congregational meeting after worship on Sunday, June 13th, for the purpose of electing officers. The meeting will be held BOTH on Zoom and Livestreamed from the sanctuary. This means that you can attend from home or from church. The link for the Zoom meeting will go out in the Saturday, June 12th, email.
For June 6 Worship
RSVP for In-Person Worship
For Sunday, June 6, we will ask that people continue to RSVP so we can keep a count on the number of people coming. You can RSVP by filling out this online form, or emailing the office at firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling the office at 805-967-6327. Please let us know your name, the names of the people in your party, and a contact phone number.
This Sunday we will present a lecture by Dom Crossan, entitled “The Life of Jesus: Economic Exploitation and the Sea of Galilee” from the series, “GOD & IMPERIAL POWER: Jesus & Economic Injustice.” Crossan speaks of “empire” and “eschaton” and suggests we look at the Kingdom of Rome and the Kingdom of God as two giant tectonic plates pushing against each other down below the surface of history. The "Jesus Boat" discovered in 1986 demonstrates the hardship of life for fisherman on the Sea of Galilee under the reign of Herod Antipas who had just built a new capitol, Tiberius, on the Sea in honor of the Emperor. The people of Galilee lived with an “eschatological expectation” for God to put an “end to the suffering and injustice.” Crossan paints a clear picture of the struggle, hopelessness, sorrow and anger of the people.
John Dominic Crossan and Joerg Rieger expand our awareness of the historic collusion between Christianity and the empires of the west, from Jesus’ non-violent program of resistance to Roman Imperialism under Augustus, to the imperialistic “partnerships” of the 21st Century. Individually, these two scholars are powerhouses. Together, they are explosive.