Greetings to all in the Love of Jesus Christ:
Like many of you, my heart is heavy given the violence and hatred we read about in the news. Every day, we are bombarded with words and images that are in compete contrast to the values taught by the early Christian community that we try to embody. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Oh, for a world with more kindness, more gentleness, more self-control.
But my heart is also lifted by the good news of God’s love and by all those who attempt to embody God’s love for the world. For Christians, that story starts with Jesus. In the face of hatred, Jesus practiced love. In the face of indifference, Jesus practiced kindness. In the face of violence, Jesus practiced self-control. And ever since, Jesus has inspired people to do likewise. True, many people have evoked the name of Jesus but not the Spirit of Jesus. True, many people claim to follow Jesus but seem to be making little progress in exhibiting peace, patience, and kindness. But we are also blessed with many people who HAVE embodied the Spirit and values of Jesus, even at times when their hearts were heavy too.
I am excited that three people who DO exhibit the fruit of the Spirit are coming to speak at our Regional Assembly, November 4-5. Juan Rodriguez, Paul Tche, and Yvonne Gilmore, three influential leaders in the Disciples movement, will be sharing the weekend with us, offering words of illumination, inspiration, and wisdom. I am grateful that each of them accepted our invitation, and I look forward to their presence here in Arizona. I hope you will ALL join us for our Assembly. We’ll have more details each month, but for now, please reserve Friday, November 4 and Saturday, November 5 on your calendar.
Dios les bendiga!
Regional Minister and President, Christian Church in Arizona
We invite you to pray for the following congregations in the coming months. Visit our Regional Calendar of Weekly Prayers for our annual list.
26 Desert Heritage Church DOC/UCC (Mesa) led by Pastor Derrick Elliot
3 First Christian Church (Tucson) led by Pastor Ailsa Guardiola González
10 East Mesa Christian Church (Mesa) led by Pastor Charles Dubbs
17 Sun City Christian Church (Sun City) led by Pastor Gary Luallin
24 Coolwater Christian Church (Scottsdale) led by Pastor Rick Gates