Healing

Healing

Universal Christ Book Group

We gathered this week in a time of conversation regarding the book by Richard Rohr, The Universal Christ. What I am noticing that completely delights me is that people are asking very basic questions. One might imagine that means they are at the beginning of their spiritual journey. Oh, not so! It actually means they have travelled quite a distance, so they can begin to wonder and question within their faith, where they are not satisfied with what they were…

Prayer Shawl Ministry

The Holy Spirit has drawn us into another extension of our desire to offer Christ’s healing to all people. We gather now as a group to knit prayer shawls, those wonderful, warm shawls that we create with prayer and yarn which become real manifestations of God’s love through our hands. We are so blessed to be able to offer someone in need, either in times of grief or health concerns, a prayer shawl. We all bless the shawls in church…

Taize Contemplative Service

We gathered in candlelight, turned our hearts toward the holiness drawn near to us by the harpist, and settled into holy and sacred space. Through chanting, prayer, quiet, intimacy, and the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, we found a new expression of the love of God made real to us in community. We offer these Taize Contemplative Eucharists on the first Saturday of every other month as a way to draw those of us who find God through contemplative practices…

Blue Christmas Service

We began our beautiful service tonight with the following prayer: God of abundant mercy, you have given us grace to pray with one heart and one voice, even though our hearts are broken and our voices tremble with grief and sorrow. Comfort, comfort, Lord, your holy people. Comfort those of us who sit in darkness, mourning beneath our sorrow’s load. Speak to us of the peace that awaits us, of the balm of healing for our weary and wounded souls.…

Approaching the Gospels Together

On the first Sunday of the month we gather to explore the gospels together, using a Contemplative Dialogue approach which encourages everyone’s participation and which understands that wisdom is found in the hearts of everyone gathered. Today was no exception. We compared the texts of Mark, Matthew, and Luke and many unsettling topics settled into our hearts. Sometimes the path toward knowledge and truth lead us into difficult places first. We traveled a bit into what unclean spirits mean to…

Take, eat, this is my body, given for you. Christ the King sermon

St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church The Rev. Barbara Hutchinson Christ the King Sunday November 26, 2017 Take, eat, this is my body, given for you. In these simple yet remarkable words, Jesus gives us everything. In our outstretched hands, we receive whatever it is we are lacking in our heart, mind, body, or soul, be it hope, healing, joy, comfort, inspiration, challenge, insight, creativity, strength, or a taste of what is yet to come in our lives. It is a moment…

Where have you found God in the forests? Or the “forest” times of your life?

St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church The Rev. Barbara Hutchinson Seasons of Creation Year A: Forest October 8, 2017 There are moments in our lives, sometimes fleeting or seemingly nearly beyond our grasp, when we catch a glimpse of something beyond the ordinary, when everything lines up and everything seems right. We may describe these moments as “being in the flow”, or of a sense of wholeness or peace that overcomes us, or experiencing a surge of newness, or a spark of…

Youth Mini-Mission Event: Growing hearts by getting our hands dirty

I never want to take for granted the good-will of our young people. Many are teenagers and it wouldn’t surprise me, nor appall me, if once in awhile, I saw a discrediting look, or a rolling-of-the eyes, or a resistance to roll up their sleeves and do some hard physical work. Yet what I see instead takes my breath away. Rather I see willingness to do whatever is asked, or I see their capacity to stretch to meet the new…

Resurrection. Restoration. Reorientation.

After 24 hours of traveling from Jerusalem to Shippensburg, I arrived safely home. In the tiredness I feel this morning, and in light of the comments yesterday by others in our group that “I need a vacation from my vacation!”, I realize there’s a significant distinction between restoration, which we often get from a relaxing and restful vacation, and a pilgrimage which has led us to our place of resurrection. In my pondering, I believe restoration or renewal returns us,…

Ready to come home.

This morning I took with me the altar veil (the cloth which covers the chalice and paten) which was made out of Gretchen’s wedding dress. I chose this item to bring from St. Andrew’s, since it represented to me a true understanding of community and communion, the giving of oneself to the greater good and the glory of God. It represented to me so much of what I found as the place of my resurrection: self-emptying, surrender, commitment, and dedication…

Stay close to the cross.

We gathered in the morning light, with the lingering clouds highlighted in a rose hue above the cross which adorns St. George’s Cathedral, and we listened to the instructions of our guide, Iyad, as we headed into the city of Jerusalem to walk the stations of the cross. The various stations are strategically placed throughout the city and many pilgrims traverse the Via Dolrosa. The instructions Iyad offered us seemed to be mere logistical considerations, yet they were much more…

On the move with Jesus.

We were on the move with Jesus these past few days! The evening before, when we saw the 1st century grotto where Jesus must have spent time, either because it was his family’s home or his relatives, something shifted inside of me. I could see it. I could see the reality of what we spoke of in seminary as “the historical Jesus”. This was the real person who played and prayed, who visited relatives, met new people, created his own…
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