Pastor Note #86: Consumers or Disciples?

In the past few years, I’ve had some interesting conversations with folks who are involved with volunteer fire departments in various communities around where I live.  All of those local departments are struggling.  Funding is a challenge, to be sure.  But the really difficult problem is getting enough volunteers to fill their ranks. People are … Continue reading Pastor Note #86: Consumers or Disciples?

Quote of Note #76: A Contrast Community

"If we hope to experience transformation, we need to develop a culture in the congregation that encourages people to live in the world for the sake of the world, without being of the world.  Gerhard Lohfink, in Jesus and Community, makes a strong case that it has always been God's intention to work through a … Continue reading Quote of Note #76: A Contrast Community

Quote of Note #58–Vibrancy of Spiritual Life in the Church

"Look at the New Testament Christian, look at the New Testament church, and you see it vibrant with a spiritual life, and, of course, it is always life that tends to lead to excesses.  There is no problem of discipline in a graveyard; there is no problem very much in a formal church." Martyn Lloyd-Jones, … Continue reading Quote of Note #58–Vibrancy of Spiritual Life in the Church

Pastor Note #83 — God’s Toolbox

I love hand tools – old hand tools.  My workbench and toolboxes are stocked with a wide variety of old hammers of all sorts, wood plains of several different types, chisels, and draw knives, and hand saws.  I have a few very interesting old pipe wrenches, which I honestly hope I never have to use, … Continue reading Pastor Note #83 — God’s Toolbox

Pastor Note #78: Christian Witness in an Age of Offense

In the 1960s it was the Age of Aquarius.  (If you’re much younger than I am, you probably don’t understand that reference.)  We are now in the Age of Offense.  Everybody is offended these days.  Everybody has become touchy.  We all tend to take everything personally.  We have begun to use the things that offend … Continue reading Pastor Note #78: Christian Witness in an Age of Offense

Pastor Note #73: No “Us” and “Them”: Race, Ethnicity, and the Mandate of Love

No “Us” and “Them”:  Race, Ethnicity, and the Mandate of Love A Sermon Preached at Venice Presbyterian Church on August 20, 2017 Pastor Gary A. Chorpenning Venice Presbyterian Church Cecil Township, PA http://www.venice-church.org Acts 15:1-21 Since you can’t help but notice it, let me acknowledge that I’m going to do something here this morning that … Continue reading Pastor Note #73: No “Us” and “Them”: Race, Ethnicity, and the Mandate of Love

Quote of Note #11 — Dealing with People Who Disagree with Us

"We ought to  endeavor to live in peace with those who are of different opinions from us.  'Tis a most unreasonable thing to take the liberty of contending with men because they cannot see with our eyes.  If this were granted, we would be at war with the greatest part of the world.  'Tis as … Continue reading Quote of Note #11 — Dealing with People Who Disagree with Us

Pastor Note #71: Loving Each Other in Words

Loving Each Other in Words The sad truth is that not all churches are places where people treat each other well.  Some churches can become notorious for the way their people are prone to fight and mistreat each other.  Jesus said, “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you love … Continue reading Pastor Note #71: Loving Each Other in Words

Pastor Note #65 — A Congregational Vision for Prayer and Healing

A Vision for Prayer & Healing in the Life of our Church The Ministry of Prayer in the Life of our Congregation             The presence of God is sought and found in a diligent and unremitting pursuit of God through prayer.  Prayer is not the work of a few.  It … Continue reading Pastor Note #65 — A Congregational Vision for Prayer and Healing