Bread and Fish

Gosh it is good to be back from my sabbatical and serving among all of you at UCC Missoula once again! I missed you! If you haven’t heard me say it yet, THANK YOU for the long tradition this congregation has established of giving clergy time away for renewal and THANK YOU for the generous gift cards you supplied me to our local Trailhead store. THANK YOU for your prayers and for your warm welcome back. THANK YOU to everyone who took on extra work while I was away.

My sabbatical felt like a miracle, really. It was generous gift of unstructured time to learn about myself and spend time with Laurie in the beautiful place we all call home in Missoula. Miracles like tall and ancient ponderosas, goldfinches on the feeder, growing children, courageous young people, and generous elders are all around us.  

This Sunday, I’ll be preaching on the well-known story of the miracle of the loaves and fishes in Matthew 14: 13-21. I’m working with a theme of “Doing a Lot With a Little.” As stewardship letters go out and you are asked to consider how you can share the resources you have with UCC Missoula for the coming year, maybe you have a lot to share-- maybe you have a little. When we put it all together, mix in a big helping of faith and hope, and sprinkle on some prayer, this church can create miracles. I have seen it with my own eyes.

Don’t forget to write down your own miracle story, big or small/short or long, and send it to Brad Herron at Stories will be shared with the congregation, anonymously, in the coming weeks.

Peace and gratitude,

Pastor Laura

Everything Changes
In our sermon series we are exploring how our brains were designed to be suspicious of change, and for good reason–homeostasis in good measure helps us thrive, protecting us from danger. But if we look closely at what the Creator set in motion, we find that change is the most constant part of life and necessary for animating our spirits as we find renewed purpose throughout life. Jesus advocated for changes that would keep us moving toward greater goodness!  “Everything Changes” John 12:20-26 In our scripture this week Jesus asks us to let go of life “as it is” in order to create and multiply the love that is eternal. What feels like the chaos, or recklessness, of change is the breaking-open of possibility and the sprouting of new life. This is what it means to follow the change-maker Jesus and serve his purpose of more love in the world. -Pastor Courtney

Publish Date:

October 16, 2020

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