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From the presiding Bishop

God loves - April 27, 2018

During a recent chapel service at the Lutheran Center, Rafael Malpica Padilla, executive director for Global Mission, shared his favorite Bible verse with us: “Now before the festival of the Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in […]

April fools - March 30, 2018

It all started with such promise: The angel announcing to Mary that the child she would bear would be called Son of the Most High; Mary’s conviction that this child was the embodiment of God’s promised justice, that the powerful would be brought down from their thrones and the lowly lifted up, that the hungry […]

God’s irresistible call - March 2, 2018

When first elected presiding bishop, I was often asked what it meant to be the first woman entrusted with this call. I didn’t like that question then. I’m still ambivalent about it now. Why, in the 21st century, did my gender matter? Why, in 2013, was the election of a woman historic? I didn’t understand […]

A valentine gift from God - February 2, 2018

“Love means never having to say you’re sorry” (Love Story). “Forgiveness guaranteed. Repentance optional” (sign in front of a Lutheran church).   This year Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day fall on the same date. It seems like an odd pairing—Ash Wednesday, a day of solemn repentance and honest reckoning of our brokenness, and Valentine’s Day, […]

Church speak - December 29, 2017

A colleague at the Lutheran Center related this story. An unchurched friend of hers was visiting and noticed her Advent calendar. “What is Advent?” she asked. A simple question. But my colleague soon discovered it wasn’t that easy to explain Advent to someone who had never heard of it, but who also had no frame […]

Disengage the autopilot - December 1, 2017

I was driving to work one day thinking about my schedule—the meetings I needed to attend, reports I needed to finish, preparations still to be completed for upcoming travel, email I needed to answer, phone calls I absolutely had to make, and compiling a grocery list in my head so I would pick up what […]

Living in a broken world - October 27, 2017

As I write this the Gulf Coast and Florida are starting the long recovery after hurricanes Harvey and Irma; Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are mostly ­­without electricity and running low on water, food, medicine and gasoline after Hurricane Maria. All of us are reeling from the horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas. There […]

Oct. 32 and beyond - September 29, 2017

This is the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. For the past year it has been “All Reformation All the Time!” Everything Martin Luther. The really observant have branched out to Philipp Melanchthon and Johannes Bugenhagen. True believers will dress their children up as Martin and Katie for Halloween, or if they tend toward the fear […]

At the table together - September 1, 2017

Old recipes are precious things. They give instructions about how to prepare a dish, but they are so much more. They are filled with memories. They connect families as they are passed from one generation to the next. They bring events and people from long ago right into the present. I am looking at a […]

The laborers in the vineyard - July 28, 2017

Just before Jesus entered Jerusalem on that first Palm Sunday, Jesus told a very interesting parable. It’s sometimes known as the “Laborers in the vineyard” (Matthew 20:1-16). You remember how it goes: A landowner hires laborers for his vineyard at 6 a.m., promising them that he would pay the usual daily wage. Then he hired […]