Posts Tagged ‘9/11’


Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Today marks another anniversary of a day we will not forget.

The thoughts for me are deeply mixed.  The first thoughts go clearly to those who lost their lives that day and in the days since at the hands of an inexcusable act  of violence directed against the United States that in turn spilled out across the Middle East. There simply are not words for it.  I remember reading day in and day out the New York Times obituaries of the deceased.  As the wonder of the people’s lives unfolded so did the sadness at seeing so much life snuffed out prematurely.

The other part yearns for the 9/12 world, a world we no longer speak of.  Nicholas Kristof, a columnist for the New York Times focusing on human rights, wrote in a column yesterday that, “One way or another, I fear that we may well end up at war with Iran in the next four years….”  It appeared as a throw away line in a long column.  With 10 years of war behind us and a future war looming ahead of us, when those who do write of 9/12 comment on the uneasy inevitability of another conflict, I am saddened.

I would love to hear a 9/12 voice … a growing chorus in this country and in the Middle East.  Will we rediscover, as humanity, the prophetic words of Isaiah for this generation, not as a saccharine sweet platitude but as an unsettling call?  ”God will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.”  (Isaiah 2:4)  Hearing that call is hearing the call to hope.

“Honor the fallen by challenging the living.”

Monday, September 12th, 2011

We spoke on 9/11 about living into the 9/12 world.

The world is faced daily with “9/11′s” – acts of horrific violence perpetrated on innocent bystanders.  How we remember those events is critical to who we are.  We can build our memories and our lives around anger, hatred and revenge.  Or we can build memories and lives around love, compassion, and sacrifice. This is a stark choice in many ways.  And, we need to fully acknowledge that we get to decide.

We also get to decide what world we choose to live in.  What is that choice on 9/12/2011?  With deep humility I ask all of us to allow time to consider a question.   Imagine taking 15 minutes to write “The world I choose to live into on 9/12/2011 is ….”  There is no power that can keep us from answering that question and living into the answer as best we can.

At NewChurch LIVE, our hope is to create with God’s help a clear call to action, one in which we use Christianity not as a “membership” system but as a framing system for holding the world and moving towards a future in which we navigate via love, compassion, and sacrifice – which is the Christian model, and the footsteps of Jesus.

The invitation and yes, the challenge … Join us on that endeavor.  There are many opportunities just this week alone for starting that journey.

Women’s Vespers: On Tuesday night, September 13th, our Women’s Ministry is hosting a BBQ dinner and Vespers service at the NewChurch LIVE offices, 2790 Huntingdon Pike in Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania.  (Please park at the Mitchell Performing Arts Center if you are familiar with the area.)  Dinner is at 5:30.  Vespers is at 6:30 PM.  Feel free to attend one or both.

Strength: On Wednesday night, September 14th, join us at the NewChurch LIVE offices for our “Strength” program.  ”Strength” is a Christian New Church program oriented towards the 12 Steps that is designed to help those us with bad habits, hurts, and hangups.  Dinner begins at 5:45.  The program starts at 6:30.  Come for dinner or just the program.

Open Houses: We are offering a series of Open Houses to discuss mission, vision, as well as your dreams and stewardship of NewChurch LIVE.  The dates for the Open Houses are September 18th, September 22nd, September 27th, October 2nd, and October 5th.  Please contact for more information.

Do we know where we are going? Absolutely not.  We are a process church and as such our focus is on finding a way forward together as God gives us to see it.  That is not a “soft” call because to be a process church means engagement is of the utmost value.  Restated we must shift towards being creators not just consumers.  We do need to live into a 9/12 world.   Older models are reaching their natural limits and it is time to start asking the question “Is there a brighter future out there and am I being called by God to help form it?”  Let’s dream!  Let’s explore!  Let’s create!