February 10, 2016

Lectionary Reflections: Lent 1C Luke 4:1-11, Matthew 1:12-13, Mark 1:12-13 References to Jesus’ temptation in the desert appear in all three synoptic gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Mark makes a brief, two-verse reference to the event (Mk. 1:12-13). Mark recounts that the Spirit drove Jesus into the wilderness. In Luke and Matthew, we are told that the Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness. Matthew’s version makes it sound as if the express purpose of the wilderness experience was so that… Read more

February 10, 2016

I recently read a quote by the Lebanese American poet Kahlil Gibran posted by a friend from High School on Facebook. She wrote it on the occasion of saying goodbye to beloved friends whom, in her travels, she had to leave to return home. “For without words, in friendship, all thoughts, all desires, all expectations, are born and shared, With joy that is unacclaimed. When you part from your friend, you grieve not; For that which you love most in… Read more

February 1, 2016

Knack for Noticing is Back! Dear friends and readers, For some time I wrote a weekly column for Patheos called Edgy Exegesis. Some weeks it was edgier than others! I stopped writing it a year ago, but appreciate the Facebook messages and emails I continue to get from those who find the archived entries helpful in their sermon preparation or devotional reading. I’m getting back into blogging now, but am broadening my focus from each week’s lectionary gospel text to… Read more

July 29, 2015

This article is part of the Patheos Public Square on the Future of Faith in America: Progressive Christianity. Read other perspectives here. In 1971 John Lennon wrote “Imagine,” a track on the album of the same name. The song’s lyrics encourage the listener to imagine a world at peace. The impediments to a world at peace, according to the song, are living for fear of punishment or hope of reward rather than focusing on the present, religion, violent nationalism, and materialism. These factors… Read more

August 27, 2013

We spent a week in August at Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. We’ve been going there off and on as an extended family for over 30 years now. One of my favorite features of the annual beach week is the nightly family walk to the boardwalk which inevitably includes a stop at the Ice Cream Store. Located at #6 Rehoboth Avenue, next to Candy Kitchen, this delectable stop features 12 flavors of snow cones, funnel cake, waffles, and 100 flavors of ice… Read more

August 24, 2013

When a new semester starts I usually feel a bit overwhelmed at the full fall ahead. I decided I had tagged the commitments facing me this fall “Demands,” and needed to retag them as “Opportunities.” To that end I committed to a change in the way I begin my mornings. Rather than begin each day with an anxious litany of “things Alyce has to do,” I pledged to begin it with prayer and some spiritual reading. I have a shelf… Read more

August 6, 2013

Here is a story a friend of mine who works as a development officer told me recently. It’s a true story that I think could function as  a modern day parable. The President and Vice-President for Development at a prominent north eastern university scheduled a meeting with a wealthy alumnus potential donor. The University was in the process of raising $5M to build a new cafeteria on campus. The appointed day and time arrived for the President and VP to meet with the donor…. Read more

July 29, 2013

The only way to be able to bear living far away from your family, assuming that you like them, is to avoid nostalgia at all costs. For the past 13 years, I’ve done so quite successfully. My mom, my husband’s parents, all of our siblings, cousins and nieces and nephews, and now, a grandniece, all live in Pennsylvania. I love my job and there are lots of great people in Texas, but there is something about the pull of where… Read more

July 24, 2013

Several weeks ago our daughter Rebecca and her husband Dallas invited us to dinner on a Friday night. They’ve been married two years. In the middle of dinner, Rebecca said brightly, “I got Dallas a new white board for our home office. It covers the whole wall. I even put a green wood frame around it. Do you want to see it?” Rebecca is the Director of Communications at First Presbyterian Church in Dallas. Dallas is a PhD student studying… Read more

June 24, 2013

I preached at First United Methodist Church  in Rockwall, Texas yesterday. After the three services, one of the members asked me if I would like some vegetables from their community garden. He held out a box brimming with onions, red, yellow and white. “I got tired of looking at the big expanse of lawn behind the church that wasn’t doing anybody any good. So now we have a community garden and quite a harvest.” A good question for our spiritual… Read more

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