Tuesday, November 3, 2020

For Election Day

 Last night, a group of us gathered for a Pre-Election Prayer Vigil. I want to share with you a scripture and the closing prayer from our gathering that you might pray it today. Praying for and with you this day and in the days to come.

Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” No, “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

-Romans 12:9-21, NRSV

Almighty God who has given us an abundance of good things, set our feet about these shores, and called us to give an account for the work of our hands, we ask your blessings on this election.
Give hope to us, oh Lord, that these days are not unknown to you. 
As we powerfully proclaim that you are not a God of darkness and chaos, let us with steadfast hearts participate in this beautiful exercise of democracy.
Give love to us, oh Lord, as we deepen our need to love one another. 
Remind us that you, not our candidates, are the fount of all holiness. 
Let us recall with humility our own sins as we remember that all are welcome at your table. 
Open our hearts as we pray for those who will carry on the work of directing this country.
Give us mercy, oh Lord, to lose with dignity and win with compassion, remembering that all those on the ballot were made in your image. 
Let us rise again tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow with an urgency to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, bury the dead, shelter the traveler, comfort the sick, and set the captive free.
Lord, hear the prayers of all those gathered in voting booths, in precincts, in long lines, at ballot boxes. Keep them safe as you watch over all of us. We give you this day, and every day, to shelter and bless this country we love, in the name of Christ who first loved us; Amen.
-Adapted from a prayer by A.E. Graham (https://rabbitroom.com/2016/11/a-liturgy-for-election-day/)




 


Monday, June 8, 2020

Racial Justice Resources


7 racial justice activists talk about the evolution of Black ...A number of resources for racial justice were mentioned by our guest preacher, Stephanie Cooper, yesterday, and others have been suggested by members of our congregation since. As we are all at different points on the journey towards racial justice and ending systemic racism, I encourage you to pick one and start (or continue) your education and action:

Trouble the Water: A Christian Resource for the work of Racial Justice (WE HAVE MANY COPIES OF THIS AT CHURCH--LET PASTOR ABBY KNOW IF YOU'D LIKE HER TO GET ONE TO YOU!)

1619 Podcast

“Me and White supremacy”- Layla Saad

“White Fragility”- Robin Diangelo

Anti-racism resources on the Alliance of Baptists website

A new resource from the National Museum of African-American History and Culture:

A great list of 75 actions White people in particular can do for racial justice (though many of them are things we can ALL do)

Finally, our Community Conversation on Race next Sunday at 4PM will focus on the intersection of COVID and systemic racism. We'll be reading these four articles together, all of which I commend to you--and would also encourage you to join us on Sunday, even if you've never been in these conversations before:

1. From The Atlantic: America's Racial Contract is Showing

2. From The Capital Gazette: Racism is a public health issue in Anne Arundel County. Coronavirus pandemic shows what that means.


3. From The Washington Post: ‘We don’t get justice’: When a black girl’s death from covid-19 feels like a collision of two crises 

4. From Vox Media: What public health experts want critics to know about why they support the protests


It's a lot of info, but pick somewhere and get started!







Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Creation Care Resources for Reflection and Action



Happy Earth Day, everyone! In the spirit of last Sunday's sermon, here are some resources that can help you consider your faithful response as a follower of the resurrected Jesus to the crisis of climate change facing our earth.

     A brief overview of how the Bible speaks to climate action:
         https://www.saltproject.org/progressive-christian-blog/2020/4/20/earth-day-climate-action-and-the-bible

On how COVID might change our way of thinking about creation care: https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200326-covid-19-the-impact-of-coronavirus-on-the-environment




On how continued climate change makes more COVID-like outbreaks likely:

On our need for systemic change:


Practical ways you can care for creation during this home-bound Earth Day:


Saturday, April 4, 2020

Holy Week Worship Opportunities

Join us for worship via ZOOM throughout Holy Week! All of our gatherings except the Friday morning one can be accessed by this Zoom link (zoom.us/j/4206093840) and the password 343864 (PASSWORD IS NEW!)

Sunday, April 5 10am: Palm Sunday worship (bring your own palms and bread/juice/wine for communion!)

Thursday, April 9 5:30pm: Maundy Thursday worship (this will take the place of Prayer and Share that week--you'll need a bowl of water and bread/juice/wine for communion)

Friday, April 10 10am: Journey with Jesus Interactive Prayer Stations (particularly geared towards kids)--use link https://us04web.zoom.us/j/135152522 for this service only, which we do together with our neighbors at Asbury-Arnold UMC (You'll need to gather a few things beforehand to fully appreciate the experience: a coat, piece of bread/cracker, cup, stick or toothpick, tissue, something a little pointy/sharp, a cross (cut one out of paper or make one if you don't have one), a lit candle or flashlight, a rock. A recorded video of experience will also be made available if you can’t get on live at 10 but would like to participate at another time.

Friday, April 10 7:30pm: Good Friday Sundown Prayer (a brief 30 min service of reflection)

Sunday, April 12 10am: Easter Sunday Worship! (no sunrise service; we'll celebrate Community Easter Sunrise whenever we can all be back together later in the spring/summer)

Hope to see your faces throughout this Holy Week!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Worship During COVID-19

In light of the continued spread of COVID-19 in our area and recommendations from public health officials, at this time the Broadneck Church Council has decided to suspend in-person church gatherings, including worship. This is difficult for us as our faith is a fully embodied one. However, the people of God are the people of God no matter where or how they gather! So we hope you'll continue to gather with us virtually via ZOOM at the following times:

Sundays at 9:45am: Worship gathering (Worship itself begins at 10am--get on at 9:45 to greet one another and work out our technical glitches!) You can access the bulletin each week by clicking here.

Thursdays at 7:30pm: Prayer and Share (a 30-45 minute time of sharing how we're doing and our prayer requests, and spending time in guided prayer together)

All of our gatherings can be accessed by this Zoom link (zoom.us/j/4206093840) and a password that will change every two weeks; get the password by contacting us. Please hear us say that ALL are invited to participate--the password is simply an added step to keep our virtual space safe and welcoming to all. If you haven't used Zoom before, see our previous blog post about how to set up Zoom on your device and prepare for worship each week.


Worship will be different, but if our experience thus far is any indication, it will be meaningful and vital even in this strange time. We will share, we will sing all at slightly different times from each other, we will be challenged, and we will live out the words of Hebrews 10:23-25: "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for the One who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together...but encouraging one another all the more."

Friday, March 13, 2020

Joining us for worship during COVID-19


We will not be worshiping together physically in the BBC building as we seek to do our part to protect our neighbors and one another by helping slow the spread of COVID-19.

However, this doesn’t mean that we won’t be worshiping together! We are excited about using Zoom to create an online worship space this Sunday morning for our 10AM worship. Here's how you can participate:


1) On your laptop, tablet, or smartphone, download the Zoom app (https://zoom.us), install the software and set up a free account. It's very easy!

2) We recommend each household gather on a single device--if you have a person on a laptop in one room and a smartphone in another, there tends to be too much feedback and strain on the system.

3) Before worship, you may wish to download and print the bulletin so you can follow, read and sing along in the appropriate places. The bulletin will be linked on Friday of each week from here.

4) If possible, find a candle to light in your own home at the beginning of worship--we always do this when together, and if each of us light a Christ Candle in our own space, it will be a visible way to remember Jesus' presence with us and to connect us further in our separate locations.

5) On Sunday morning please log in around 9:45 using the information below. Logging in early will give us all a chance to greet each other, work out kinks, and be ready to enter into a more worshipful space when 10 rolls around. Just click https://zoom.us/j/4206093840. The meeting ID is 420 609 3840. If you don't have or wish to get the Zoom app, then from landline or phone, you can dial in 1 301 715 8592. Contact us by email to get the password needed to proceed from this point into the gathering (this is an added step to keep us all as safe as possible in our cyber gathering space!).

You may also wish to join us on Thursday evenings at 7:30 for "Zoom Share-and-Prayer"--This will be about 30-45 minutes where we can gather virtually, share how we're doing and what prayer concerns we have, and engage in guided prayer together.  The link to join via Zoom is the same as for worship--https://zoom.us/j/4206093840 and the password will be the same as well.

There will be glitches in our online life together, and NOTHING is a substitute for in-person contact and worship. However, as we do our part to help slow the spread of this virus that is life-threatening to so many of our neighbors, including folks among our church family, this could be an opportunity for us to learn to connect in new ways and maybe even have some fun while doing it!

Monday, January 27, 2020

Reflection and resources on Affordable Housing

This Epiphany, we are spending six Sundays looking at the six areas of focus of ACT (Anne Arundel Connecting Together) in light of our faith and scripture. Each week I will be lifting up resources to help you reflect and learn more about these areas where we as Christians are called to care for our neighbors in practical, loving ways.

For this week, here are some resources to help you reflect on our Christian response to Safe and Affordable Housing:

First, some graphics showing if people in our county/area working in different professions could afford to either rent or put a 3% or 10% down payment on an average apartment/home based on their annual income (courtesy of NHC.org):



To learn more, pursue some of these ways to educate yourself:

 Finally, take time to listen again (or for the first time, if you were not in worship Sunday) to Rich Mullins' powerful song about Jesus' life with insecure housing, You Did Not Have a Home, by following this link or watching the video below.