Pastors’ Column

Each week one of our pastors or staff members writes a column observing what is going on in our congregation, the Church and the world, and offering reflections on the Christian life and faith. Through this series of columns, we hope to connect your and our story to the enduring story of Christ; to offer pastoral reflections on our ongoing congregational life and mission; to report on news of the Presbyterian Church and Church universal; and to invite further reflection and deeper discipleship. We welcome your comments and suggestions. In other words, our words here are an invitation to continue the conversation.

Celebrating Leigh DeVries’ Ordination

In this season of Thanksgiving, we at Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church have much for which to be thankful. We celebrate that by the abounding generosity of this congregation the hungry are fed good things, those who thirst drink from the rivers of life, the sick are visited, and the poor have good news brought to them in word and deed. By the generosity of this congregation, people of all ages are being nurtured in faith, upheld by hope and encouraged to trust that the future belongs to the goodness and faithfulness of God who blesses each of us with abundant life. By the generosity of this congregation, for the first time in a decade we have a full pastoral team to help lead the congregation to fulfill our mission as disciples of Jesus Christ.

Advent Gift Market 2019

Earlier this week I heard a story on the radio about the holiday shopping season being six days shorter because of how late Thanksgiving is this year. But listeners and retailers alike were told not to worry, because technically the holiday shopping season is already upon us. As I reflected on this story, I realized I have been receiving emails from retailers informing me of their Black Friday sales that are already underway.

All Saints

This Sunday, November 3, there will be a special commemoration of All Saints as we remember and give thanks to God for the lives of our church members who have entered the church triumphant. Those who have died within the year since last All Saints Sunday will be remembered by name during the celebration of the Lord’s Supper at both of our morning services. As we gather around the communion table to enjoy a foretaste of a heavenly banquet to come, we will recall the great crowd of witnesses who have gone on before.

Responsive Faith

It’s hard for me to overstate how much I will enjoy this upcoming Sunday, October 27. First, it’s the second birthday of our younger son, Ollie. He’s a joyful addition to our family, and we are leaning toward the idea of keeping him. It’s also Reformation Sunday, the day we celebrate our historic witness in working to reform the theology and practices of the medieval church. I will belt out one of my favorite hymns, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God,” with gusto. And finally it’s Dedication Sunday, the day we dedicate our pledges for the upcoming year as an act of Christian discipleship.

Learning to Tell Your Story

Inside each of us is a story. It’s the story of our lives, the tale of how we became who we are today, in all its splendor and gravity. By nature it’s a personal story, which is why passing it on to others can be one of the most intimate, meaningful gifts.

The Gift of Partnership

Within just a few weeks of starting here as your Associate Pastor for Mission in 2015, I was told that we would be visiting a mission partner in Mexico City that fall. In 2014, Urban Mosaic was awarded the Richard Shaull Grant for Mission in the amount of $30,000 to help them build up their innovative model of engaging in and empowering residents of the slum communities that have continued to grow outside of Mexico City.

World Communion Music Highlights

This Sunday is our annual day of World Communion. Begun in 1933 by Hugh Thomson Kerr, pastor of Shadyside Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh, his idea was to bring churches together in a service of Christian unity—in which everyone might receive both inspiration and information, and above all, to know how important the Church of Jesus Christ is, and how each congregation is interconnected, one with another. By 1940, the idea spread to churches throughout the world.