If you know that God's love embraces all persons equally, no matter their gender, race, or sexual identity...
If you understand that faith is a matter of mind as well as heart, and that taking the Bible seriously means it cannot always be taken literally...
If, for you, diversity, tolerance, and inclusion are strengths to be taught...
If you believe that Christ calls us to be nothing less than global citizens, that the social expression of love is justice and that spiritual concerns are inseparable from a commitment to the natural world...
If you have wished for a more open and embracing community of faith to nurture your spirit and raise your children, and haven't yet found a place of belonging...
... then please know that Kairos-Milwaukie United Church of Christ is the place for you.
About Our Community
Kairos-Milwaukie UCC seeks to create a community where participants can experience intellectual and spiritual excitement; a spirit of openness and acceptance, as well as love and laughter. We are a community where evangelism is in partnership with social justice; where personal spiritual growth and concern for the poor and disenfranchised go hand in hand; where nurture and action are two sides of the same coin; where love for tradition and a sense of urgency about the future are integrally linked. We are a community of faithful people who have known the joy of having been loved, accepted and affirmed by God. We are a community that celebrates our diversity as a way to understand and respond to the inclusiveness of God's love and the wideness of God's mercy.
by Rev. Rick Skidmore
A six-pointed star, a crescent moon, a lotus flower – the symbols of other Faiths suggest beauty and light. How did the cross, an instrument of torture, come to represent Christianity? James Carroll, the Paulist priest turned op-ed. columnist for the Boston Globe, in his book, Constantine’s Sword, explains that the cross is an ambiguous symbol, and its history at the center of Christian faith is not what we think it is. In the first centuries after Jesus, the cross was not an object of devotion, or even contemplation. If you visit the ancient catacombs, you will find scratched on the walls other signs that the Jesus movement valued – the fish, the cup, but not the cross.
The symbolism of the cross begins only in the 4th century with Constantine, whose conversion to Christianity in 312 stands as one of the milestones of history. As he himself told the story, Constantine embraced the faith after seeing a vision of the cross in the sky on the night before a great battle. The next day he marched into battle leading an army whose shields were marked with the cross. The association of the cross with acts of conquest would reach dramatic proportions during the crusades.
Palm Sunday / Passion Sunday Celebration.
Sunday, April 13th at 10:00 a.m.
Worship followed by a Pancake Breakfast hosted by "the men."
Maundy Thursday Holy Communion & Tenebrae Service.
Thursday, April 17 at 7:00 p.m. in the sanctuary.
Maundy comes from the Latin, meaning "command." The reference is to the new commandment Jesus gives to his disciples 'to love one another' as they meet to share their last meal together.
Friday, April 18th from noon to 3:00 p.m.
The sanctuary will be open for personal prayers and devotion.
Easter Sunday Worship
Sunday, April 20th at 10:00 a.m.
Our Easter service will feature special music, including again this year a performance of Bob Chilcott's "A Little Jazz Mass." Our traditional Easter egg "find" will follow worship.
"Eternity is in the present. Eternity is in the palm of the hand. Eternity is in a seed of hope whose sudden roots break barriers, that keep my heart from becoming a tomb." -- Thomas Merton
A resolution on Israel-Palestine is coming to Kairos-Milwaukie UCC.
Our Church Council has voted to bring a resolution on Israel-Palestine to the congregation for a vote at our June 21 annual meeting. If passed, the resolution will then go to the Central Pacific Conference for a vote, and on to the UCC General Synod.
The resolution comes from the United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network. This group is made up of national UCC staff, lay people and clergy from all over the country who are greatly concerned by what each has seen in travels to the Holy Land.
What is happening? Palestinians in the West Bank live under military law and military occupation unlike their Israeli brothers and sisters who live under Israeli civil law. They have suffered theft of their land to build settlements. A Wall and hundreds of checkpoints separate them from their hospitals, schools, orchards, jobs, friends, family, and holy sites. They are being systematically pushed into smaller and smaller areas separated from each other. Water sources have been confiscated and then offered back for purchase on an expensive and limited basis, while settlement pools are filled and bushes and gardens watered. There are well built Jew-only roads between all-Jewish settlements and Jerusalem. Roads for the Palestinians are often poorly maintained or blocked with cement blocks stopping passage. Thousands of Palestinian and Bedouin's homes have been demolished by order of the Israeli government. Crops and orchards are destroyed by settlers in an effort to get Palestinians to leave their land. There are arbitrary arrests of Palestinians including the arrest of children without legal representation, trial, or parental support.
By Rick Skidmore
We call it Easter after the name of the Anglo Saxon Spring Goddess, with her hair the color of daffodils and eyes like violets. In many churches women still wear hats on Easter Sunday and men still put on something new to ensure good fortune in the days ahead.
If we were French speaking we would call the day “Pâcques” a word derived from the Hebrew word Pesach, “Passover”. Most scholars believe Passover doubly focused on the celebration of the spring harvest and the lambing of the flocks, with the joyful remembrance of the Israelites journey from captivity to freedom.
Spring has already made a notable advance in my neighborhood, although the sun and rain continue to battle back and forth with no treaty of peace in sight. It used to be that things went rather predictably in the department of nature’s seasons. Climate change may have commuted all that. In the realm of human nature, in the matter of our need for personal and social deliverance, rescue, redemption, we continue to struggle. The natural impulses of Easter are strong, but the trials and troubles in the battle for human liberation can overwhelm.
In the Valley of the Shadow
By Rev. Rick Skidmore
The sermon presented on Sunday, April 6, 2014.
“We’re to forgive people, right? Our fight isn’t with people. People get tangled up in the chaos all the time. But, people themselves are not evil. Our struggle isn’t against other people. All people are the children of God. I think it’s more than just a pretty thought. I don’t think you can love people as Jesus did if you don’t understand life the way that he did. Jesus felt compassion for outcasts and for outsiders, for maniacs and thieves, whereas you and I feel judgment and hatred. He saw them as caught up, overrun at times, by this negative spirituality of greed and wrath and anger and jealousy. And his effort was to free them…”
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Thoughts on the lectionary passages for Easter Sunday (April 20, 2014)
By Rev. Jim Ogden
Acts 10:34-43, Jeremiah 31:1-6, Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24, Colossians 3:1-4, John 20:1-18 OR Matthew 28:1-10
The seed for today’s reflection was planted at the beginning of Lent when someone connected it with the season when days begin to “lengthen.” The word originally meant “spring.” I thought of all the Easter associations we make with spring, images which highlight the presence of new birth in our midst. It’s a season when one hardly needs to focus on Jesus to sense hope in the air.
The back of my mind registered a question: What about the southern hemisphere when Lent comes when the days are getting shorter? The question rolled around there until this week when it surfaced and demanded to be heard. It took me all over the internet finding things that might give me a handle on the seasonal mysteries of Easter. Here are some of the interesting things I found. Take them for what they’re worth. I can’t put them all into some kind of logical framework as part of an argument for some particular perspective. If you want that, you’ll have to do it for yourself.
Three Choices for the Lent and Easter Season
Three books were recommended, so for the Lent and Easter season, you decide which one of the three to read – or read all three if you so choose.
Help. Thanks. Wow. The Three Essential Prayers by Anne Lamott
Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life by Karen Armstrong
Living Buddha, Living Christ by Thich Nhat Hanh
All deal with the challenge of deepening our worldview, keeping prayer simple and earnest, seeing the world “feelingly”, showing compassion as the central action of faith and religion, and welcoming the insights of faith traditions other than our own.
It shouldn’t be too much of a stretch to see how the three books intersect.
Opportunities for lively discussion and conversation coming up:
Sunday, April 6 at 11:30 am in the church library
Sunday, April 27 at 11:30 am in the church library
Or start a discussion on the Kairos Book Club Google Group!
Kairos-Milwaukie United Church of Christ
No matter who you are, or where you are on life's journey, you're welcome here!
office [at] kairosucc.org
4790 SE Logus Road
Milwaukie, Oregon 97222