New Blog Post: Affirming Baptism and Forming Faith

The season of Advent marks the official beginning of the Christian year,
but fall marks the beginning of another season of learning in the school and
church.  I generally focus on discipleship at this time of year.  My constant
pastoral mission is to make disciples of Christ.  I try to keep this mission in
mind with everything I do as a pastor.  And yet there are times when more
intentionality is required.  Fall is one of those times.  As students return to
school, so do we, in a sense, return to Jesus’ school of discipleship.  Not that
we should ever leave this school, but it’s always good to be proactive and
intentional in our discipleship.  So I’m pleased to announce the beginning of a
new sermon series called “Affirming Baptism and Forming Faith,” which is
designed to help us grow spiritually.  Where does faith come from?  Why is it
that some people believe and some do not?  The Paul and Lydia story from Acts 16:11-15 helps us to reflect on the gift of faith and learn about the four key elements
of the faith-giving process, as creator of this sermon-series, Rev. Howard
Vanderwell, points out: (1) speaking the message of God to others, (2) calling
them to respond to the message; (3) God’s work of opening their heart; and (4)
the willful response of listeners.  May the Lord increase our faith and affirm
our baptism today and through this year–through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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