Gleanings for summer reflection
Tony Campolo tells about a friend who was walking through the midway at a county fair when he met a tiny girl. She was carrying a great big fluff of cotton candy on a stick, almost as large as herself! He said to her, “How can a little girl like you eat all that cotton candy?”
“Well,” she said to him, “I’m really much bigger on the inside than I am on the outside!”
That’s essentially what Jesus is saying: “You are witnesses of these things.” On the outside you may seem to be nothing but on the inside you’re as big as the kingdom and the power and the glory of your God! You can and will make a difference!
Forrest Church: It was Jesus’ life that mattered – the power of his love, the penetrating simplicity of his teachings, the force of his example of service on behalf of the disenfranchised and down-trodden.
Dag Hammarskjöld : You cannot play with the animal in you without becoming wholly animal, play with the falsehood without forfeiting your right to truth, play with cruelty without losing your sensitivity of mind. One who wants to keep the garden tidy doesn’t reserve a plot for weeds.
Oliver Wendell Holmes: Alas for those who never sing, but died with all their music in them.
Henry Blackaby: There is a great cost to those you love in order for you to be obedient to the will of God.
Vincent van Gogh: In spite of everything I shall rise again: I will take up my pencil, which I have forsaken in my great discouragement, and I will go on with my drawing.
John Wesley: The best parable has always been the life of a human being who is able to listen to God and live with neighbors.
James Baldwin: Nothing is more desirable than to be released from an affliction, but nothing is more frightening than to be divested of a crutch.
Thomas Merton: What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves? This is the most important of all voyages of discovery, and without it, all the rest are not only useless, but disastrous.
Carter Heyward: Genuine humility is a gift from God which has nothing to do with downcast eyes, a misty voice and noble stories of sacrifice. Humility is, rather, living courageously in a spirit of radical connectedness with others, which enables us to see ourselves as God sees us: sisters and brothers, each as deeply valued and worthy of respect as every other.
From the Root to the Fruit: Foundations of Methodism
July 11, 18 and 25, 2012
Do you know what it means to be United Methodist? Dr. Emora Brannan, historian and scholar, has an answer for this question! Come and enjoy Wednesdays in discussion about the roots of Methodism and what it means for your walk as a United Methodist. We’ll meet in the museum. Entrance on 22nd St.
6:30-7 pm Meet, Mingle and Munch (feel free to bring a snack)
7-8:30 pm Lecture and Discussion
8:30-9 pm A Sweet Treat
RSVP by July 8 to Diane Macklin
5th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27
2 Corinthians 8:7-15
6th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10
2 Corinthians 12:2-10
7th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19
8th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 7:1-14a
Mark 6:30-34, 53-56
2 Samuel 11:1-15
10th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 11:26-12:13a
11th after Pentecost
2 Samuel 18:5-9, 31-35
John 6:35, 41-51
12th after Pentecost
1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14
13th after Pentecost
1 Kings 8:22-30, 41-43
In Memory of
Alice Shugars by Dorothy Krug
George R. White, Jr. by Virginia Myers
Jean Hugg by Nancy Nedwell
In Honor of
Kevin and Kimberly White by Virginia Myers
The Wesley Singers by Grace UMC
Congratulations to Eve Gillison! She graduated from Friends School in June. Eve is enrolled for this next year in Haverford College in suburban Philadelphia.
Walter Jackson has also completed a time of study. He graduated in May from Wesley Seminary. He is currently serving two churches in Baltimore, Orangeville and St. Matthew’s. Walter plans to pursue the ordination process in the Baltimore-Washington Conference.
Michael Giles and Linda Keene joined the church by reaffirmation of faith on May 13th.
We appreciate this commitment they have made to Lovely Lane.
We are sad to announce the death of Jean Hugg. She died on May 23rd. For the past 10 years, Jean lived with her husband, Jack, at Asbury-Solomons. Jean made many of the paraments that we still use for the altar area. Our prayers and sympathy are with Jack.
July 1 Mike Rouse
July 8 Craig Smith
July 15 Sarah Scribner
July 22 Cathy Dryden
July 29 Carol Curtis
Aug 5 Mike Rouse
Aug 12 Craig Smith
Aug 19 Sarah Scribner
Aug 26 Cathy Dryden
July 1 Sharra Kelly/Robert Furbay
July 8 Bea Badders/Carrie Harnick
July 15 Elizabeth, Sean, Liam Hines
July 22 Cathy Dryden/Dean Uhler
July 29 Aimee and Ken Delaney
Aug 5 Linda Webb/Diane Macklin
Aug 12 Susan Allenback/John Strawbridge
Aug 19 Nancy and Emora Brannan
Aug 26 Angie and Dennis Ferguson
July 1 Denzel Enos
July 8 Quinn Gillison
July 15 Hannah Coates
July 22 Lee Enos
July 29 Eve Gillison
Aug 5 Denzel Enos
Aug 12 Quinn Gillison
Aug 19 Hannah Coates
Aug 26 Lee Enos
From Standing Fast
sermon by John Strawbridge Anniversary Sunday 2012
What may we accomplish without fear? Or, at least, without being ruled by fear? It was in [an] uncertain time that Joseph Pilmore organized a Baltimore Methodist Society … on June 22, 1772… a society consisting of about 40 members. Two years later, they built their own first meeting house… a modest brick chapel on the road leading to the farm of John Lovely and so named Lovely Lane. What did they feel, those forty or more committed Methodists as they stood in that little meeting house?
“In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.” That’s a quote from one of my favorite 20th century philosophers… Bill Cosby. Our New Testament lesson teaches us a different lesson about fear. Not the fear of taking on a big job… but the facing of an even greater fear… change. Nothing is scarier than change. Looking out of your little boat that, up ‘til now, had been so safe – and seeing that the waves are getting higher, and the wind is growing stronger.
At such a time, it can seem that God is not with you. The Disciples felt Christ had all but abandoned them by leading them into that boat and then going to sleep on a cushion. And when they woke Him – finally after waiting until the boat was nearly swamped – it was He that was angry with them; “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith” he demands… perhaps with emphasis on the still. God had not abandoned the Disciples – they had abandoned Him by not going toward him. Faith, after all, is
the cure for fear.
There is no dividing line between past and present. “The Past” is just a term for decisions already made – choices already taken. We would like to think those choices and decisions are over and done with, but they are still with us. We walk a path that follows those steps already taken. We have the dreadful responsibility of choice; of either continuing on the paved road or blazing a different path.
Our history is not something that is over-and-done with. We are still living out the story. We do not know where we are in the story. Are we even halfway through? I hope we are near the beginning. This is where we stand, in this place and in this time, because this is where we need to be. Not because this is where we are most comfortable, but because this is our station. This is where we know people can find us. It is our mission to protect and maintain this home for all of our children to come home to.
And though we have slowly moved from place to place – we know it is important to stand for what we believe. And we are standing… as fast as our feet will take us.
From the Lay Leader…
Since first coming to Lovely Lane some years ago – I didn’t think there was anywhere I hadn’t been. From the top of the tower to the bottom of the catacomb… in the attic above the sanctuary dome and in the crawl space behind the chapel windows… inside the light well and outside on the Sunday School roof. But among all the rooms, hallways, nooks and crannies of Lovely Lane, there was one place I had never been… not until this past week.
As most of you know; Anniversary Sunday (yesterday, as I write this) was my first opportunity to stand behind the pulpit for a Sunday Worship Service. Oh, sure, I’ve stood at the pulpit – to work on the microphone or change the light bulb of the reading lamp or some such thing – but it’s another thing entirely to stand behind the pulpit. With an expectant congregation looking back at you.
So I can tell you, now from experience, that it’s a pretty good place to stand. And since you, too, may not have had that experience yet – let me tell you what you’ll see if you do ever stand behind that pulpit:
You will not see the sanctuary… not the dome… not the windows… You will see faces. Faces that are open and receptive. Faces loving and supporting. Faces that are familiar and welcome. You will see your family portrait. And despite that fact that our sanctuary seats several hundred more souls than we usually see on Sunday morning, you will not see empty seats. Lovely Lane, you’ll see, is still inhabited by the lively spirit of so many before us. Just in my own short time: Ed Schell, Bob Weiblen, Wilton Shaw, and others… People you’ve known that I can’t name. And people who have preceded any of us now alive. This is not to say that Lovely Lane is haunted… it is simply full of lives.
And if you look really close, you may even begin to see the presence of folks who have not yet come; future members, babies yet to be born or baptized, new professions of faith. This is a pretty good group to be a part of. And whether or not you get the opportunity to stand behind the pulpit, be sure to take a moment to look at the faces that surround and embrace you when you are at church. See what these people contribute to your life, and what you can offer to them.
But don’t stop there – look at the faces that surround you outside of worship. Who could benefit from what we have to offer? And how would our lives be better for what someone new would bring? Because of all the many places there are to be at Lovely Lane, the best place to be, is standing beside someone.
John Strawbridge, LAY LEADER