October Thoughts from Pastor Erika

The archives, I may have told you, are gorgeous. Church records were for many years hand- written in perfect calligraphy into a book with a marbled brown cover. The long, narrow book holds meeting minutes, attendance lists, expense records, and community covenants. But there’s more: Old bulletins tell of a sermon […]

September Thoughts from Pastor Erika

In high school, my friend Todd worked at a grocery store. I brought some bread and fruit through his checkout line once and was surprised to see a bright green sticker on his nametag that announced, “I’M NEW HERE!” I asked him, “Haven’t you worked here for a while now?” […]

August Thoughts from Pastor Erika

“Worship is primary theology,” writes Kathleen Norris. “It is also home, which is, as the saying goes, the place where they have to take you in. There is no one who is not welcome in God’s house, and nothing can alter that fact. When people come together to worship, they […]

Thoughts from Pastor Erika – July

First Baptist Church, what a legacy you have of standing on the right side of history. Though there are differences of opinion in our congregation about how to interpret particular scriptures, in practice we have been a welcoming and affirming   congregation for many years. The LGBTQIA group Together Works has […]

Thoughts from Pastor Erika – June

In Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s 1868 novel, ‘The Idiot’, one character asks another, “Is it true that you once said, ‘Beauty will save the world’?”  The question is often misquoted as a statement, an affirmative – but I think it’s worth considering as a question. We are surrounded by beauty – the […]

Thoughts from Pastor Erika – May

“It’s a good day to be an American Baptist.” That’s what Judy Fackenthal, current president of our denomination, said to a small group of clergy women who gathered in Santa Fe, New Mexico a few weeks ago too. It was near the end of our week – we’d spent time […]

Thoughts from Pastor Erika – April

One of the incredible gifts of my role here as pastor is getting to listen to people’s stories. Often, people with no real connection to this place – except that they happened to be driving by, or they once knew someone here, or they found themselves in need and someone pointed […]

Thoughts from Pastor Erika – March

There are so many Biblical heroes I want to pick fights with. Paul, first, with his rules about who can speak, and where. Second, any author who used the refrain “not counting women and children” (as in, “Then Jesus fed the hungry crowd, and there were about 5000 who ate, […]

February Lenten Worship Highlights

Feb. 7 – Communion Sunday                                         Luke 5:1-11  – Deeper Waters Our LENTEN Theme:  “The SPACE Between”  This Lent, we’ll make space. We’ll create room for the mystery at the heart of our faith. Feb. 14 – 1st Sunday of Lent Job1; Mark 10:17-27 – Personal Space Feb. 21 – 2nd […]