Overheard
June - July 2008

"Why was the rabbi at an altar and under a cross? Who was the pastor alongside the Torah in the Temple? They weren't lost."

The lead paragraph of a feature story in The Denver Post on the Rev. David Bahr, pastor of Park Hill Congregational UCC in Denver, and Rabbi Adam Morris of Temple Micah. The two congregations have shared a building for 30 years, and the two clergyman recently presented dialogue sermons at the congregations' respective services.

"There is no question that even now I can feel the aches and bruises that come from working around old, gutted houses. There is no question that working in the heat and humidity of New Orleans was draining. And there is no question that the 1,600-mile drive home is not designed to refresh. But I feel refreshed." 

The Rev. Doug Moore of Norwich Congregational UCC in Norwich, Vt., in sermon in May after returning as a month-long volunteer for post-Katrina recovery. Moore and his wife, Judy, spent two months in New Orleans last year.

"To some degree, the UCC's problems with dissension and defections can be found in most mainline Protestant churches today. But the UCC, by dint of its history, its system of governance, and its leadership, has become an even more intense arena of theological controversy."

U.S. News & World Report's May 9 feature story on the UCC, "Wright controversy draws attention to United Church of Christ."

"The United Church of Christ is in no position to offer leadership on this subject … We call on the United Church of Christ to live our Christ-given unity in repentance and humility rather than presume to dialogue about race."

The Rev. David Runnion-Bareford of the Biblical Witness Fellowship, on May 14, calling for the UCC to suspend its call for a sacred conversation on race.

"I often start sermons in United Church of Christ churches by reminding our faithful that we are the people who do not believe you have to 'check your brains at the door' when you enter church."

The Rev. Susan Thistlethwaite, president of UCC-related Chicago theological Seminary, in a Washington Post op-ed on April 15. 

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CONTACT INFO

Rev. J. Bennett Guess
Executive Minister, Local Church Ministries
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland,Ohio 44115
216-736-3801
guessb@ucc.org