From the Backcountry

North Greenwich Congregational Church

Weekly Pastor’s Update

October 12, 2017

Cabbage Butterfly on asters

Cabbage Butterfly on asters

 From the Backcountry …

“Good are the actions which bring no regret and whose fruit is welcomed with joy and serenity.”      Gautama Buddha

It’s said that the heaviest shackles are the ones we forge ourselves.  Despite the clever justifications we use to defend questionable actions, when they have unfortunate consequences …we tend to regret them.  Remorse is a weighty ball and chain.  While it’s not always easy to make the right choices, we must always take the time to assess their impact on ourselves and others.  Not “thinking before we act” puts everyone’s happiness in jeopardy.

Sunday, October 15   Morning Worship 10:30 a.m.

Lectionary Psalm 23; Matthew 22: 1-14

Text:  “Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding robe?”  Matthew 22:12

Sermon:  “Fashion Police”

Synopsis:  Jesus often uses wedding customs of his day to describe the working of God’s Kingdom.  In this week’s passage, an unsuspecting quest is banished from a wedding reception for wearing inappropriate attire.  At first, it seems as though the poor man is being treated harshly and unfairly.  Would we throw an invited guest out of a party for showing up in the wrong outfit?  As we take a closer look, however, a hidden agenda emerges that may justify the host’s discourteousness.

Our Church’s Wider Mission

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Refugee Crisis

 Our government recently announced that next year, the United States will welcome the lowest number of refugees since Congress enacted the 1980 Refugee Act.  Only 45,000 individuals will be admitted.  This decision comes as the global community struggles with the worst displacement crisis in history.  65 million people have been forced to leave their home because of violence and persecution.

The following statement was issued by Dr. John C. Dorhauer, General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ:

            “This Administration has now set the lowest refugee admissions goal in U.S. history, which is an affront to faith traditions like the United Church of Christ who work daily to accompany refugees and welcome them to our communities.  We cannot allow politics to influence the moral imperative to welcome refugees who are fleeing extreme conditions and facing political persecution.  We are committed to continue to lift up the voice of refugees and all those who are targeted by harmful policies that hurt marginalized communities.” 

In Matthew 24, Jesus teaches us that the way we treat the most vulnerable members of our society reflects how we treat Christ himself.  As a people of faith, we must do everything we can to call upon our elected leaders to increase refugee admissions, reaching out to those struggling to rebuild their lives and raise their families in safety. 

See you Sunday,

Royal

Road Rules:  “The path of the heart requires a full gesture, a degree of abandon that can be terrifying.  Only then is it possible to achieve the sparkling transformation we seek         Carlos Casteneda