A Word from Our Pastor 2014 February: Faith Clinics

Copy of IMG_7663The Sunday/Wednesday Bible Studies have been renamed — as “Faith Clinic.” The change of name will help bring focus on what we are trying to accomplish in these sessions. We are NOT interested only in studying the Bible, but in using study and dialogue to deepen our understanding and practice of faith. We have many different experiences of the Bible in our congregation; some people have studied it a lot, some haven’t really looked at it since their childhood, and others have almost no background. This is a wonderful thing! The Faith Clinic is intended for everyone. This variety of experience will enrich our discussions, so that we can grow in our knowledge of Christian teaching, our personal relationship with each other and our communion with God. We hope that you will come Sunday mornings at 9:30 or Wednesday evenings at 6 – and bring your faith, your doubts, your questions and your beliefs, as well as your “unbeliefs” We are coordinating our worship services so that as much as possible, the theme of the Faith Clinic will be addressed in Sunday morning worship.

Here are the upcoming schedule and topics:

February 2 & February 5: “Experiencing God’s Presence”
February 9 & February 12: “Experiencing God’s Guidance”

During Lent (which begins on March 5) we will be studying a small book, “Why?: Making Sense of God’s Will” for 4 sessions. This book by Rev. Adam Hamilton addresses many questions about suffering – the kinds of questions that can be very troubling to people who seek to have faith in God but wonder why bad things may happen to good people. We hope that this exploration will bring people rational explanations as well as emotional comfort.

March 9 & March 12: Why do the Innocent Suffer?
March 16 & March 19: Why do my prayers go answered?”
March 23 & March 26: Why Can’t I see God’s will for my life?
March 30 & April 2: Why God’s Love Prevails.

During Lent, we will also have some new teachers for these classes! We hope to see you there.

A highlight of our February schedule is always the Day of Remembrance – the commemoration of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. This year, our guest speaker on February 16 will be Eizo Kobayashi. Eizo was interned at Topaz; we will also feature some information on the prison camp in Santa Fe, NM. At BMUC, when we reflect upon the wartime experience of Japanese Americans, it is part of our faith journey to understand how God is with us at all times, in all places. God’s love for us travels with us wherever we go, and we are called to share that love with those we encounter along the way. As we learn together in Faith Clinics or in worship, or in small group conversation or during worship, we have more to offer to others. Each of these is an opportunity to deepen our insight into God’s activity in daily life. May you be blessed by God’s presence and God’s guidance in the days to come!

–Rev. Naomi