PASTOR’S PEN
 

“Interfaith Responses to the Corona Virus Crisis.”

On Tuesday afternoon, I attended an on-line gathering called — “Interfaith Responses to the Corona Virus Crisis.” It was hosted by the Institute for Ecological Civilization. It was a wonderful sharing of fascinating people from many faith perspectives. One of the key insights that kept getting repeated is how this world event that we are all sharing in right now, drives home the truth that all of life is connected and whatever happens to you, happens to me. We are only as strong as the most vulnerable among us.  
 
We can see that this time is bringing out the best and worst in people. Many are frightened and there has been terrible suffering and loss of life. At the same time the financial suffering on thousands is devastating.
 
One of the speakers yesterday said, “This crisis is too good to be wasted.” Not to downplay the tragedy but this is a transformational moment — a chance to hit the “restart button” and do some things differently. Have you seen the reports on the improved air quality? This forced shut-down is having some positive effects on the creation. We have some time to look at our collective lives and make some changes.
 
All of life is one. What will the new normal be? The old normal did not work well for many. Pray for a new normal that works for the many. There is a National Interfaith Prayer Service today (May 7). For information, go to the Religions for Peace website — rfpusa.org. Also check out the website for the United Religious Institute URI.org.
 
My thoughts and prayers are with you,
 
Steve


Listen tor the ‘Good Shepherd’

Hi friends — here we are about to enter May and still sheltering in place. I hope you are all doing well and staying healthy. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily. I hope you have been able to join us online for worship. This Sunday we will once again celebrate Holy Communion. I hope you will join in for this. Have a cracker or bread and a small cup of water, grape juice or wine ready when you join us for live-stream worship. 
     In the gospel lesson this week (John 10: 1 – 10), we are given two metaphors for Christ. “The Good Shepherd” whose voice we can trust and follow and “The Door” through which we find God. 
     This got me to thinking. In this time of pandemic, are we careful about the voices we listen to? Are we thoughtful about what doors we walk through and where they lead? There are a lot of voices out there giving advice and telling us what to do. Listen to the wrong one and you might drink disinfectant or protest sheltering in place. Walk through the wrong door and you might end up someplace that is hard to get out of. 
     Do you listen first and most for the voice of the Good Shepherd? Do you walk first through the door that is Christ and avoid those that will take you in the wrong direction or to an unhealthy destination?



Pastor Steve Lundin