Last evening around 60 CMCers joined 1600+ folks at the BREAD Nehemiah Action at the Celeste Center.  It’s the climax of BREAD’s annual cycle of organizing around solutions to problems facing folks in Franklin County.  Here are three things I’m chewing on the morning after….

+ One of the opening reflections was given by Rabbi Alex Braver of Congregation Tifereth Israel.  He referenced BREAD’s framing biblical story of the Exodus, with Pharaoh representing the entrenched forces that set themselves against justice, and BREAD congregations representing the plague of the gnats –...

It’s good to have friendships across borders.  It enlarges our world and personalizes distant places.  In Christian language, it is the nature of the body of Christ to transgress boundaries of tribe and nation.  In Christ we are one. 

I’d like to use this week’s midweek reflection to pass along a message from a friend of the congregation, Yasir Makki.  Yasir studied at OSU about two decades ago and was part of CMC before returning to his homeland of Sudan where he leads churches and a school.  He visits us and other local churches annually to give updates and invite continued...

I had been trying to wrack my brain to come up with another experience or trip that I’ve taken in my life that could count as worthy of being called a pilgrimage when the lyrics to the song “Arrow” by half.alive helped me remember and think about the importance of the inner pilgrimage.  All pilgrimages involve an inner journey to match whatever outer journey is taking place, but we don’t need to go on any literal trips to undertake the daily inner journey of reconnecting with who we are and who we are becoming. The lyrics that...

Days after the rains the river

still swells but is back within its banks.

The air is crisp but gloves hold the heat and the sun

promises warmth to come.

Two geese are eating grass.

A squirrel risks its luck and darts in front of my tire.

A leashed dog squats, looks me in the eye,

And takes a morning crap.

The wheels turn true on the path as the rider

ponders Could a commute be a pilgrimage?

At the church awaits email and Zoom

and the annual report and more subtleties of the Divine.

Approaching High Street...

This evening begins the Muslim month of Ramadan.  It’s a season of fasting during daylight hours, sharing pre-dawn and post-dusk meals with family and friends, spiritual reflection, and giving donations for the poor.  There are nearly 2,000,000,000 (two billion) Muslims in the world, about ¼ of humanity.  Columbus’ large Somali population are among those observing Ramadan locally. 

Because the Islamic calendar is based on the moon, Ramadan floats around the seasons.

In 2000 Ramadan happened in December.  It coincided with a semester of study in the Middle East during my...