Beginning on June 11th, I will be moving away from the appointed lectionary readings for worship and preaching. In their place I will be presenting a longish sermon series: On Faith.
Over the last few years one of the conversations I have had on many occasions regards what it is we in the United Church of Christ believe, how we approach the Bible, what we understand about God, ourselves, and the world. So, for several months, each Sunday we will be looking at another statement in the United Church of Christ's Statement of Faith.
If you grew up in another tradition, if you're just curious, if you want to know more about our denomination and who we are, this is a great opportunity to make a journey of discovery outside of an educational setting.
In preparation for the series, here is the UCC's Statement of Faith:
We believe in you, O God, Eternal Spirit, God of our Savior Jesus Christ and our God, and to your deeds we testify:
You call the worlds into being, create persons in your own image, and set before each one the ways of life and death.
You seek in holy love to save all people from aimlessness and sin.
You judge people and nations by your righteous will declared through prophets and apostles.
In Jesus Christ, the man of Nazareth, our crucified and risen Savior, you have come to us and shared our common lot, conquering sin and death and reconciling the world to yourself.
You bestow upon us your Holy Spirit, creating and renewing the church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant faithful people of all ages, tongues, and races.
You call us into your church to accept the cost and joy of discipleship, to be your servants in the service of others, to proclaim the gospel to all the world and resist the powers of evil, to share in Christ's baptism and eat at his table, to join him in his passion and victory.
You promise to all who trust you forgiveness of sins and fullness of grace, courage in the struggle for justice and peace, your presence in trial and rejoicing, and eternal life in your realm which has no end.
I hope that you will find this interesting, that your faith will be challenged, that you will come to know God in new and amazing ways.
With the Greatest of Hope!