Newsletter

Aug 17, 2018
For your prayer and reflection this week:

Humans have the capacity for the deepest, most beautiful forms of love,
and also for the most grievous forms of hurt, exploitation, and violence.
My heart grieves at the revelation of thousands of new sexual abuses and misconduct by clergy in Pennsylvania.
It is the deepest form of broken trust when violence is done in the name of the Holy One, 
who is pure Love.
Jesus, as I understand it, is a self-revelation of the Divine.
For Jesus, God is not a distant deity up in the sky,
who does not care about this world or the trajectory of human history. 
God is Abba, Father-Mother, who cares deeply for us as a parent does for their child.
Jesus wept at the loss of his friends;
he grieved at the ways that violence had infused the culture of his day.
Jesus had some of his toughest words for those in religious authority 
who had abused their power.

Jesus’ first words (in the gospel of Mark) after beginning his ministry are “Repent”-
literally metanoia (from the Greek), a turning around; a transformation.
God cries when we cry;
She grieves at the turning away from love that is manifest as violence and abuse.
God rejoices as we turn ever more in the direction of light, love, peace, equality, service, gentleness, and humility.
With our pure freedom,
we are the instruments through which peace comes.
Through our misuse of freedom,
we are the cause of untold hurts and wounds that can take many years to heal.
God’s invitation to us is to always use our freedom in the direction of love.
Sexual abuse is rooted in fear, and in power over, not love.
Abuse is never the beauty that we know in committed, loving relationships between mutually consenting adults.

Let us remember the words of the Psalmist (Psalm 85):
“Mercy and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.”
May we seek social justice and accountability and change,
ever-remembering God’s grace and mercy;
that it is hurting people that hurt others.
May we ask how we can add to the healing, 
not to the hurt.
and may we always look to the light of God’s love,
in which we are whole,
in which we are eternally Home.

Friends, it was great to see many of you last Sunday at our picnic!  I look forward to seeing many of you next Sunday August 26th for our dinner church.  It'll be great to be together again.

Are you free Sunday to help transport kids from Home Suites Temporary Homeless Shelter, so that they can have a fun day in Dover?  We will be driving kids from Home Suites Temporary Motel and Homeless Shelter in Waltham to a Camp in Dover.  I'll be taking a 15 passenger Brandeis van to transport kids, and other volunteers from churches in Newton are helping also.  But, there have been lots of signups for kids going, so there is a need for additional drivers.  Pickup is at Home Suites Inn in Waltham at 12pm, and event is 1-4pm in Dover at Camp Grossman with lots of fun activities.  The flyer is included here.

Says Pastor Susan from the Eliot Church in Newton (one of our partner churches who is helping with this):
"Right now we have 25 adults and 40 children signed up and confirmed to attend. We have the Brandeis van and the Boys and Girls Club bus that seats I think 16 or 17. We are looking for a driver to drive the bus from the Newton Methodist Church which holds 12. 
So we also need more people willing to drive kids in their own cars too. We’re hoping to avoid having to make two trips. 
Home Suites Inn is at 455 Totten Pond Rd. Waltham.  If you can help with the Methodist bus, more details are below.
If someone can volunteer to drive the bus, or their own car, please contact me  Susan cell: 818-389-5958, or email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and include your phone number. Call me with any questions. Thanks, Susan"

For our fall 8-hour racial justice training, it appears that there is a preference to space the training out within a week to two four-hour trainings on Sundays September 30 and October 7 (likely 3pm to 7pm).  More details to come as I finalize with the facilitators.

In the midst of many things in this world that we grieve, I am always grateful for a supportive spiritual community where we aim to live into the paradox of God's love for us: "God loves you just as you are (God doesn't make junk).  And, God loves you too much for you to stay just as you are!" :)

With you together in living the good news of unconditional love in the world,

Matt
 
Transporting Kids from Home Suites Homeless Shelter
Sunday, August 19th, pick up at 12pm; event finishing 4pm
If someone can volunteer to drive the bus, or their own car from Home Suites in Waltham to Camp Grossman in Dover, please contact Matt or Rev. Susan's cell: 818-389-5958, or email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and include your phone number. Call Pastor Susan with any questions.  (see more details above)
If someone can drive the UMC bus they need to pick it up from the church by 11:30. Their address is 430 Walnut St. Newton, across from Newton North High School.  The church needs a copy of their drivers license for the church’s insurance. They can make a copy. They could arrange with Charlotte, their minister, how to return the bus and keys.  Volunteers can certainly engage with the kids in the activities. The camp is hiring their people to supervise and lead activities. It should be a fun afternoon. The weather is supposed to be great.  Home Suites Inn is at 455 Totten Pond Rd. Waltham.  Camp flyer here.

Agape Dinner Church- The Ways we Worship/Pray
Sunday, August 26th at 5pm
Intercultural Center (ICC), Brandeis University
415 South St., Waltham 02453

Dinner Church- Vision partner recognition
Sunday, September 16 at 5pm
Intercultural Center (ICC), Brandeis University
415 South St., Waltham 02453

Racial Justice Training (times still being finalized)
September 30- and (3-7pm)
October 7- (3-7pm

Dinner Church
Sunday, October 14 at 5pm
Intercultural Center (ICC), Brandeis University
415 South St., Waltham 02453

October 20- Super Saturday- Keefe Tech

October 26-27- Agape Retreat?

ARTChurch Dinner Church
Sunday, November 4 at 5pm
Intercultural Center (ICC), Brandeis University
415 South St., Waltham 02453

LGBT Asylum Service 
Sunday, November 18 at 5pm

Advent Dinner Church
Sunday, December 2 at 5pm
Intercultural Center (ICC), Brandeis University
415 South St., Waltham 02453

Agape 2018 events (more soon to be posted!) and directions are at this link: http://www.agapewaltham.org/getinvolved/upcoming

www.agapewaltham.org
(This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 774-270-2185).  


If you would like to make a love donation to support the unfoldment of Agape's vision in the world of living and spreading unconditional love, you can do so at the link below, or checks can be made out to "MACUCC" with "Agape" in the memo line (and mailed to 106 Stearns Hill Rd., Waltham, MA 02451).
https://macucc-reg.brtapp.com/Agape

 

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