Good morning. These are amazing scriptures with common themes. In all of them we are confronted with direct images and experiences of bullying intimidation and death, but also grace-filled release and new life, in all of them there are choices and a dilemma presented, and in all of them Grace intervenes to offer a way through and out of the dilemma—where God may be revealed.
June 14, 2020
Text: Genesis 18:1-15
June 14, 2020
Sara laughed. Here’s what I think really happened. Sarah overheard the discussion and once again was stabbed in the heart. She, a woman of 90, had been barren. When she married Abraham, there were big dreams about children – lot of them. But year after year, when all her friends were having children, she could not conceive. Then four times she conceived but lost the babies within a few months into pregnancy. And here was this stranger saying she would have a child at her old age. How ridiculous. How absurd. And Abraham just listened, as though he believed it. “Yeah, right,” she thought. “God says I’m going to have a baby after all this time? What a joke.” She laughed.
May 31, 2020
Good Morning 8th Day! I’m so thankful for this opportunity to share with you this morning on such a special day. Today we celebrate Recommitment Sunday, Pentecost, and my first teaching at 8th Day! I’m thankful for Sito’s invitation to speak today, as it both gave me the opportunity to dive deeper into understanding of Pentecost (which I honestly didn’t know much about) and gives me a chance to share more of me with all of you!
May 17, 2020
What we are confronted with, then, is a foreign land, a passage through a desert: testing and discernment. But in this same land, from which God is not in fact absent, the seeds of a new spirituality can germinate. This spirituality gives rise to new songs of the Lord.
What new songs are we being asked to sing today? How is this passage through the desert testing us and leading to deep discernment? We are living in a strange kind of exile right now: an exile from the physical presence of one another. We’re unable to share hugs at church, to pass communion from hand to mouth, to rest our heads on one another’s shoulder as we recite our prayers and blessings. I was so looking forward to finally getting to watch Collin Bosley-Smith play baseball this spring, to sit in the stands with Dixcy and Nolan on a warm spring night, munching on popcorn, smelling the fresh grass and hearing the boys’ banter from the dugout, to jump to my feet and pump my fist in the air as Collin zipped a fastball past another hapless batter.
May 10, 2020
Texts: Acts 6:1-7
1 Peter 2:4-9
John 14: 1-12
Hello Eighth Day! For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Luisely. I am Crisely’s sister, Alfonso’s sister-in-law, and Santiago’s aunt.
Would you take 30 seconds to remember anyone who has mothered you, loved you into being, in your life? I’ll tell you when the 30 seconds are over.
Happy Mother’s Day!
Something we can thank our mothers for is that each one of them, no matter what, gave us enough life to take our first breath. So in gratitude for them and in celebration for the life given and constantly received I invite you to breath with me.
If it’s comfortable and you are able, place your hand on your ribs. And inhale through your nose feeling your ribs widen as much as is comfortable for you. Pause a bit and then allow all that air that filled up your lungs to release with ease through your nose. We’ll take five breaths together in this way, if you’d like.
May 3, 2020
John 10 1-10
What a time to be reading the most familiar of psalms. The six verse message of Psalm 23 written by David after Goliath was killed around 1044 BC brings relevance to our faith in 2020. Blessed with both good health and safe shelter, I’ve been tending to my home, my lush garden, old friendships , dusting off cupboards and attic spaces where I found the old Bible story book I had to read as child. Mother had me reciting this psalm at the bedside. So in some ways. Sito’s invitation to share today was a bit of a dusting off of my own soul.
Who does not find this psalm comforting?
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want ...
April 26, 2020
Good morning. Today I will share about the life of my father.
I remember going on a walk with my him in Rock Creek Park, which began just across the street from our house on Colorado Avenue here in DC. I was six years-old. We were just walking through the woods, without even following a trail. After a while I asked my Dad, “which way is Rock Creek?” He answered by asking me, “if you dump out a bucket of water, which way would it go?” I said “down” and he said “that’s right,” and we continued down through the gulley until we came to the creek right by where I took this picture a couple days ago.
So began a life of knowing my father as a walker, as one on a journey. Throughout the remaining 85 years of his life, he continued to journey, sometimes taking me and others of the family along, sometimes on his own, and sometimes with other journeyers. At times he encouraged me, and he inspired me and I was blessed, especially at times from the mid 1980’s on, to have many close times of sharing with him.
Text: John 20: 1-18
Text: John 20: 1-18
Christ is Risen!
Good morning, 8th Day, and happy Easter Sunday! It’s been a strange week for me, thinking about what I want to say on Easter while also trying to hold all of the emotions of Holy Week. For me, this present crisis has made it more important than ever to take things one day at a time, so writing about the empty tomb on Good Friday was a challenge.
It’s also been hard to think about what it means to celebrate the brightest and happiest day on the Christian calendar in our present moment. Easter bunnies and pink eggs don’t really fit with pandemics and economic collapse.
But the more I thought about it, the more it actually felt kind of right. A lot of that brightness and happiness we think of with Easter is a lens we’ve added after the fact. That first Easter Sunday probably felt at least as grim and confusing as this one.
March 29, 2020
Introduction to Scripture readings:
Michael Schaff: Welcome. Thank you for joining us this morning.
Crisely Melecio-Zambrano: While I was very doubtful we could make this work, Michael assured me we could do it! Michael and I were hoping that all of you could interact with these readings in new ways. When we first read through the readings for this weekend together, Michael noted that he noticed things he hadn’t heard before, so I invite you to listen to and/or watch these readings with openness to receive something new. Each of these readings has rich imagery, so even those of you who are joining us via phone can sit back and imagine each reading unfold with your different senses.