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sanctuary

Sanctuary

By Rick Godby / September 1, 2019
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Sanctuary “Lord prepare me to be a sanctuary, pure and holy, tried and true. With thanksgiving I’ll be a living sanctuary for you.” I wonder how many hundred times I’ve sung those words at camp, on retreats, and in contemporary worship services of the early 2000s. I’ll bet a lot of you know it and […]

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We are church

By Rick Godby / August 5, 2019
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We are church That’s the theme under which 16 voting members (elected at our 2018 assembly) and about a thousand other folks from the other 64 synods of the ELCA gather for the Churchwide Assembly. What’s that about, you say? Well, it happens only once every three years, and it is the highest decision-making body […]

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What bishops do

By Catherine Fink / July 1, 2019
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What bishops do I’ve spent last week from early each morning until dark each night at Lenoir-Rhyne University with 13 high schoolers from all over Region 9 in the ELCA. Though “Bishops’ School” has been happening for decades, several years ago it started rotating around to happen on the territory of the six Region 9 […]

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Bishop Smith addresses assembly

By Catherine Fink / June 2, 2019
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Bishop Smith addresses assembly Bishop Tim Smith’s address to the assembly began with a video thanking the NC Synod for their giving and lifting up the many ways the synod raises up so many fine candidates for ministry: LRU, LTSS, Agape+Kure Beach Ministries, NovusWay Ministries, campus ministry programs, and LYO. Then, he stood to address […]

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Women in Ministry

By Rick Godby / May 6, 2019
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Women in ministry On the day this article is published, I and all the bishops from Region 9* will be in Puerto Rico along with our facilitator, Dr. Mindy Makant, deacon, of Lenoir-Rhyne University and the NC Synod, to discuss, affirm, and work out logistical possibilities based on a document formulated in a series of […]

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Listening

By Rick Godby / April 1, 2019
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Listening “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” That’s the classic philosophical starter around the issues of observation and perception. If I tell you I’ll meet you at 9 a.m., but you (a) can’t hear me, (b) can hear me but aren’t […]

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Lent: Deep Honesty, Deep Freedom

By Rick Godby / March 4, 2019
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Lent: Deep Honesty, Deep Freedom In the 8th chapter of John, Jesus promises us that “if you continue in my Word, you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” Of course, his audience argues with him. “Set free? Whatever do you mean? We’ve never been slaves to anyone or anything!” (my […]

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Grant us Gratitude

By Rick Godby / February 4, 2019
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Grant us Gratitude I’ve worked with more than one congregational treasurer in parishes I’ve served who insisted on publicizing in every bulletin and newsletter how far behind the budget we were. But whenever we edged ahead in income vs. budget or expenses, they would insist that we mustn’t let people know. They assumed people are […]

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How toddlers are renewing my faith

By Rick Godby / January 7, 2019
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How toddlers are renewing my faith Those who follow me on social media will realize that I am obsessed. It’s our grandchildren—all four of them who have arrived in the past three years, and three of whom arrived in July of 2016 within a span of eight days. Honestly, I used to secretly believe that […]

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Advent symbolism and repentance

By Rick Godby / December 3, 2018
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Advent Symbolism and Repentance What with all the cultural—and admittedly, in our home—Christmas glitz, we forget that Advent is one of the two penitential liturgical seasons. As Lent’s somber journey to the cross prepares us for the joy of Easter, so Advent bids us “let every heart prepare him room.” That’s why “Joy to the […]

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