December 15, 2019

Missing Church

I confess: we missed going to church yesterday on Christmas. Despite my strong opinions that churches should have services on Christmas whether it falls on Sunday or not, and that when it is on a Sunday churches should not cancel services, we didn’t make it yesterday. We had the best intentions and planned to go […]

Christmas Day

Nativity of Our Lord — Christmas Day December 25, 2011 Isaiah 62:6-12 Psalm 97 Titus 3:4-7 Luke 2:1-20 Prayer of the Day All-powerful and unseen God, the coming of your light into our world has brightened weary hearts with peace. Call us out of darkness, and empower us to proclaim the birth of your Son, […]


Nativity of Our Lord — Christmas Eve December 24, 2011 Isaiah 9:2-7 Psalm 96 (11) Titus 2:11-14 Luke 2:1-14 [15-20] Prayer of the Day Almighty God, you made this holy night shine with the brightness of the true Light. Grant that here on earth we may walk in the light of Jesus’ presence and in […]

Joseph and the Way of Kindness

By Chaplain Mike “What is desired in a man is kindness” (Prov 19:22). If there is one major lesson I’ve learned in my six years of being a hospice chaplain, it is the importance and power of kindness. Basically, it’s my job to show kindness. I visit with patients and their families and offer to […]

Mary and the Contemplative Life

By Chaplain Mike “But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). The American evangelical church is renowned for its activism. We are a “can do” people, and in the Christian context that often means we see ourselves as “saved to serve.” We commend “being about the Lord’s business,” and value […]

Shepherds and the Doctrine of Vocation

By Chaplain Mike As I outlined yesterday, in Luke’s Christmas story (Luke 2:1-20) there are six verbs describing the actions of the shepherds in response to the Good News the angels spoke to them. The shepherds went (with haste). They found. They saw. They made known the saying that had been told them. They returned. […]

Christmas I: An Ordinary, Humble Story Set on a Great Stage

By Chaplain Mike In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to […]

Merry Christmas!

See, amid the winter’s snow, Born for us on Earth below, See, the tender Lamb appears, Promised from eternal years. Hail, thou ever blessed morn, Hail redemption’s happy dawn, Sing through all Jerusalem, Christ is born in Bethlehem. Edward Caswell, 1851

An Ordinary Night

By Chaplain Mike It was an ordinary night. If you stop to think about it, how could it have been anything else? Days and nights proceed in a generally predictable fashion. Things happen in this world. Some of those things take your breath away, true, but most of the time even the most remarkable, awe-inspiring […]