Brown Bag volunteers needed February 21st and 24th

Volunteers are needed to help with brown bag packing on Wednesday, February 21st and hospitality on Saturday, January 24th for our neighbors who stop by for food assistance. This program provides a bag of non-perishable food to 48 local neighbors in need. Bag packing lasts from 5-6 pm Wednesday, and hospitality lasts from 10-11 am Saturday. We serve food and fellowship with guests as they arrive.

Other dates for 2018:

March 21st and 24th

April 18th and 21st

Contact Molly Merkle to volunteer!

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New Year’s Eve Watch Night Service and Chili/Soup Supper, 5 pm

Join us at 5 pm Sunday, December 31st, for our New Year’s Eve worship and early watch night service, followed by a soup and chili supper. All people are welcomed for food, fellowship, prayer, reflection, worship and blessings to prepare for the year to come.

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Let Us Work Out Our Salvation

The sermon from Sunday, October 1, 2017 on Philippians 2:1-13 – 

The text tonight comes from Paul’s letter to the church at Philippi, which is generally considered to be the first Christian community in Europe. The city of Philippi was a proud Roman colony, so Jesus’ followers there gathered in the deep shadows of the empire.

This is a community Paul knows well. He has visited it and developed a relationship with its people. Scholars think he probably went to Philippi around 51 or 52 AD, so roughly 20 years after the death of Jesus. Continue reading Let Us Work Out Our Salvation

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Facing Up to Your Calling

The sermon for Sunday, September 24, 2017 on Jonah 3:10-4:11 (and indeed the whole of the text of Jonah) – 

The book of Jonah is short – just four chapters – and it follows a single, concentrated storyline.

Most sources say it was written as an allegory, as a work of narrative fiction – and included in the Bible as such. It lacks some of the specific details and the characteristic framing of the other books of the prophets.

No matter how we regard it, this book packs packs a lot of meaning into those four chapters, those 48 verses.

Continue reading Facing Up to Your Calling

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Who Are You To Pass Judgment?

The sermon from Sunday, September 17, 2017 on Romans 14:1-12

Who are you to pass judgment on servants of another? It is before their own lord that they stand or fall.

We are continuing through Paul’s words to the church at Rome.

We find ourselves this week in the 14th chapter of a letter divided for our reading into 16 chapters.

In these last sections Paul is trying to get really practical in helping the Roman Christians deal with one another.

He’s looking closely at the barriers to their community life.

If we were to create that sort of analysis today, we’d be looking not only at broad social forces, but at the gritty details of daily life.

We’d be looking not only at how we do things differently from one another, but at how we pass judgment on each other for those differences.

Continue reading Who Are You To Pass Judgment?

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And Own That Love is Heaven

The sermon from September 10, 2017 on Romans 13: 8-14 – 

I attended a funeral yesterday for one of the many loved elders in my life, someone who had steadily encouraged me on my path of ministry.

Among her many skills, she was a musician, playing both the piano and the pipe organ.

The music in tribute to her was thus especially important and especially lovely.  The final hymn was Charles Wesley’s ‘O For A Thousand Tongues To Sing,’  I have sung that hymn so many times in my life that I can generally sing the verses – and there are 7 if you sing them all – by heart.

But yesterday the very last phrase on the last line in the last verse caught me in a way it never has before.

“Anticipate your heaven below, And own that love is heaven.”

Continue reading And Own That Love is Heaven

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Advent concert series at Beloved, Sunday nights at 5

We kicked off the Advent concert series on Sunday, December 3rd with the Phenomenal D’Marie (Rev. Dollie Howell Pankey)…watch video of her performing her original song “Afraid,” below:

The series continued Sunday, December 10th at 5 PM with Beloved KB (Kelvin Benion) and the outstanding Perfect Praise choir.


Followed Sunday, December 17th at 5 PM by the sensational singing group CWEN (Christ Will Enter In).

Advent CWEN

Advent will conclude Sunday, December 24th at 5 PM with our Christmas Eve service – featuring a carols and candlelight worship with  LeNard Brown and the Beloved Community Orchestra.

All are welcome to worship, fellowship and joyful song – Sunday nights at 5 pm.

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Alabama Arise meeting on Criminal Justice Debt Monday, December 11th

Join Alabama Arise at Beloved from 6-7:30 PM on Monday, December 11th for an informational discussion on Alabama’s oppressive criminal justice debt. A presentation will be led by key legal staff from the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In addition, Arise organizer Stan Johnson will preview the entire 2018 slate of Alabama Arise state legislative priorities. Your voice and suggestions are needed to advocate on the following priorities:

  • Criminal Justice Debt (A new issue for Arise members to work on in 2018!)
  • Tax reform/Untax Groceries
  • Death Penalty Reform/Abolition
  • Affordable Housing (Housing Trust Fund)
  • Payday and Title Lending Reform
  • Public Transportation Funding (Transit Trust Fund)

The state legislative session begins Tuesday, January 9th. And, later next summer, state legislators will be campaigning for re-election. Your voice, and your vote, matters to speak out and speak up for fellow Alabamians suffering from unjust laws.

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The Reality of Gratitude

The sermon from Sunday, August 27, 2017 on Psalm 138 – 

I had a message from Rev. Sonya Gravlee midday yesterday that said “bulletin?”

At the time, I was standing at a bus stop on the upper West Side of Manhattan, halfway along the journey from the North Bronx to LaGuardia Airport, after spending a couple of days at my mother-in-law’s immersed in the work of clearing out her apartment.

Truth is, it wasn’t that I had overlooked sending her the information for the bulletin, which she kindly agrees to assemble each week.

It’s that I was still mystified by the Spirit’s tug on my heart to preach on this Psalm and on gratitude – which had been clear to me as I read through the lectionary texts last Monday – and I kept delaying in hopes that perhaps I’d get a different answer.

Continue reading The Reality of Gratitude

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A House of Prayer for All

The sermon from Sunday, August 20, 2017 on Isaiah 56:1-8

Last week we talked about  the experiences of two prophets, Elijah and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

This week we focus on the words of another, the prophet Isaiah, who brought wisdom and witness into the world more than 700 years before the birth of Christ.

It was a time of war and threat, of erasure, death, and conquest. Sound familiar?

Continue reading A House of Prayer for All

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