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Faith gives certainty in life’s uncertainties

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” Helen Keller observed that “faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into the light.” And John Calvin wrote faith is “the firm knowledge of God’s benevolence toward us.” While none of these definitions are fully complete, each gives us a glimpse of this Christian cornerstone, much like the beginning of Hebrews 11, which affirms that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for.”

Reformation Lessons and Carols

On Reformation Sunday, observed the last Sunday in October, Presbyterians are reminded of their Reformed heritage, hearing once again how in 1517 Martin Luther nailed to the cathedral door in Wittenberg, Germany, his Ninety-five Theses. Some pastors might use this Sunday, which is Oct. 30 this year, to reenact Luther’s bold move, while others might choose to open worship with Luther’s majestic “A Mighty Fortress is Our God.” Still others will weave in the Reformation mantra “reformed and always reforming” into the sermon, prayers or benediction. Last fall, though, the Rev. Carol Holbrook Prickett took the celebration of Reformation Sunday a step further. The pastor of Crescent Springs Presbyterian Church in Crescent Springs, Kentucky, created a service to educate today’s “reformers” of the legacy of following a God who is always creating something new.

Take your trouble to Jesus

Not worrying about tomorrow is easy to say yet difficult to do, especially when our world is in such a state of turmoil.

‘This is our story’

To celebrate the first 50 years of the National Caucus of Korean Presbyterian Churches (NCKPC), the organization held its Jubilee Symposium, “This Is Our Story,” last fall.

Becoming truly thankful

A common table prayer opens with “O Lord, make us truly thankful for that which we are about to receive …” It sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it? But isn’t there something a little strange about that prayer? I mean, why would anyone pray that way?

God makes all things new — even in a pandemic

The past year has been this odd dance of ever-changing realities and downright monotony. We have completely shifted how we live. From shopping to Sunday school, nothing is the same. All the while, this new way of living has meant staring at the same walls, the same Zoom screen and the same people day after day. Waking up to wonder what crazy thing happened while I slept, while at the same time realizing that today’s schedule will essentially look like yesterday’s, has pretty much sucked the creative lifeblood right out of me.

Minute for Mission: World Day of Prayer

World Day of Prayer is a global ecumenical movement led by Christian women who welcome all to join in prayer and action for peace and justice. This year, World Day of Prayer is celebrated Friday, March 1. The annual worship service is created by an invited writer country. In 2018, the service was created by the World Day of Prayer Committee of Suriname. With Genesis 1:1–31 as their guiding Scripture, the women of Suriname reminded us that we are all caretakers of God’s good creation. They wrote, “What God creates is always good! In the first five days, all that is needed is made ready until humankind is created. We are created in God’s image. We are worthy just because God loves us, but the creator holds us accountable for how we care for the environment and all the beings on earth. We can’t be careless or wasteful. It is time to seriously think about what we have done to God’s creation.”

A message of hope

Saying “Christ is a God of peace,” the general secretary of the National Council of Churches in Korea says he finds reasons for hope in the most recent inter-Korean summit.