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Patriotism and Politics
Thank you for John Witvliet’s excellent work in “Patriotism and Politics in Worship.” As a pastor of both those who are parents of military personnel and those who are passionately opposed to war in any form, I understand that this is a delicate area for worship leaders. I agree wholeheartedly that asking ourselves if “Christians from all parts of the world” would be nourished and edified by our worship. I would add that we should ask ourselves if “Christians from all across the political spectrum” would be welcome as well.
Rev. Kristine O’Brien, Trafalgar Presbyterian Church
What Jesus Looks Like to Me
I greatly appreciated Dean Heetderks’s article “What Jesus Looks Like to Me,” not just for the concepts that were introduced, but for the attitude that children can be artists and can also offer their art as part of worship and therefore take a lead in worship.
At one of my churches we did a “GraceWorks for Kids” Bible study during Advent with children ages 9-12. We looked at the story of the birth of Christ in Luke and Matthew, and they painted the story. I then made this into a Powerpoint presentation and it became the Scripture lesson for Christmas Eve. The children were so delighted to be leading worship with their art and their representation of the Christmas story!
Thank you for your ministry, and blessings,
Rev. Susan Woodhouse
Reformed Worship is terrific. I just read through the December issue, and I am so pleased to see you bringing together writers from various strands—URC to United Church of Canada. At Fuller we talk a lot about our “convening power”—you folks have it!
Richard J. Mouw, President and Professor of Christian Philosophy, Fuller Theological Seminary
Looking at “Introducing Lent: A Short Drama” (RW 82) gave me cause to offer an observation.
I found myself uncomfortable with the way fasting seemed to be dismissed too quickly as modern Lenten practice.
Fasting has been an ancient practice and I think it is one that needs to be reclaimed again more fully by Protestants, if not all Christians. In our modern and gluttonous North American culture it seems even more important for the church to encourage the practice of fasting. Fasting can take on many forms besides just food. There are so many things we clutter our lives with and claim to be dependent on over and above God. Fasting can be a great teacher.
Let’s bring it back into Lent.
Rev. Chris Dodge, Union Church, UCC, Hopedale, MA