Archive for September, 2010

Troubled Waters

September 23, 2010

Last week, the U of M canceled their planned showing of the documentary “Troubled Waters: A Mississippi River Story”.  The latest news is that the U has reversed course, and, given lots of public pressure, decided to show the film after all.  Here is a link to today’s MPR story:



Praying for the Queen

September 21, 2010

September 19, 2010; I Timothy 2:1-7

A sermon preached by Rev. Jane McBride, First Congregational Church of MN, UCC

I’m not usually one for cryptic sermon titles. But there’s a story behind this particular title. First church member David Anger tells the following anecdote us about English grandmother: After mass, she would complain about the priest. She would say, “he didn’t pray for the queen.” And then she would add this interpretation: “well, he is Irish!”


Lost & Found

September 16, 2010

September 12, 2010; Luke 15: 1-10.  A sermon preached by Jane McBride.

24th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 9/12/10; Luke 15:1-10

Rev. Jane McBride, First Congregational Church of MN, UCC

24th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 9/12/10; Luke 15:1-10 Rev. Jane McBride, First Congregational Church of MN, UCC

I lose things a lot. And unfortunately, I’m not gifted in the area of looking and seeking. So when I lose something, I wait, and wait a bit longer, for the item to show up again. Things generally come back to me. If a lost item doesn’t show up, I tend to be pretty zen about it. It wasn’t meant to be mine anymore; I can live without it.


Fall is in the air

September 15, 2010


I still can’t get over the day we had on Celebration Sunday… it was so gorgeous!  Several folks, knowing that I applied for our block party permit, asked me if I also put in a request for the weather.  I wish!  I must say, however, that even on that lovely, summery day, I felt a change in the air. Fall is coming.

We originally created this blog to help keep the church connected during the summer.  Now that everybody’s streaming back into town, we’re going to stick around and continue to post sermons, reflections, pictures, and other good things. Over the summer, we looked inward, talking about Sabbath and timekeeping.  As the year picks up, we turn our gaze outward to the world; look for blog posts on current events and issues of our day.  Moderator Tim Danz will be joining us, as well as some other voices… If you, dear reader, are interested in blogging with us just let us know!

And finally, I’d like to note a change.  Over the summer, the blog was set with “search engines blocked”–that is, when an Internet user googled “First Church of Minnesota,” they would not see this site in the results.  In other words, the only way you could find the blog was by knowing its exact address.  We have decided to unblock search engines in order to expand our readership and help newcomers get a sense of First Church.  So as you’re responding to posts, please be mindful that the Internet is a big, wide world.  Don’t post sensitive or personal information that you don’t wish to be public.

If you have questions or concerns about this, get in touch with Jane or me!



Celebration Sunday 9/12/10

September 13, 2010

Check out these pictures of the picnic that launched our new church year… it was a beautiful day!  (Click on a picture to page through the full-size gallery.)

Sermon 09/05/10: Hearts and Bones

September 8, 2010

Hearts and Bones
a sermon on Psalm 34 preached by the Rev. Abigail Henderson at First Congregational Church of Minnesota, UCC, on Sep. 5, 2010

"Psalm 34" courtesy of Stushie's Art

Today is the second in the series of grab-bag sermons, where you the congregation submitted ideas and we, the ministers, drew from them randomly for our preaching topics. And when I say “we,” I really mean, “I,” that is—just me. Due to our preaching schedule, Jane has been spared this particular challenge. Next time, Jane, you cannot escape…

Last week, I called to preached on Psalm 46, verse 10. This week, the topic drawn was a question. A very specific question:

What would God’s response be to people who use violence against innocent people or embezzle for their own financial gain?

Well. Gosh. Uh…


Sermon 8/29/10: Really Knowing

September 2, 2010

“Really Knowing”

preached by the Rev. Abigail Henderson at First Congregational Church of MN, UCC, on Sunday, August 29, 2010

Psalm 46:10 by textile artist Linda Witte Henke

Today is the first in a two-week series of “grab bag sermons.”  For those of you who weren’t here, this was an idea that emerged from our shared worship with University Baptist Church earlier in the summer.  Doug Donley, the minister over there, suggested that we invite the gathered congregations to write down a Scripture passage, theme, or idea for a sermon.  We mixed up their responses and then Doug and I drew randomly.  So this morning I am called to focus on verse 10 of Psalm 46:  “Be still, and know that I am God.”  Apparently, this request came from a UBC member, and she was rather disappointed that I drew it, instead of Doug!