Monthly Archives: May 2010


The 10th century Tibetan Buddhist poet, the Lama Milarepa, taught this as he prepared for his death: “All worldly pursuits have but the one unavoidable and inevitable end, which is sorrow: acquisitions end in dispersion; buildings, in destruction; meetings, in separation; births, in death. Knowing this, one should from the very first renounce acquisition and […]

Pileated Woodpecker

Receiving the News

Out on the screened porch this morning, just after 7:00 AM. A cool front had swept through the night before, bringing thunder and lightening and rain, and the early morning was cool and wet. It was quiet.  No neighbor was making any outside noise yet. I heard the bird before I saw him.  His call is […]

Graduation in the city

What a contrast! This past weekend, the town of Williamsburg was shut down by William and Mary graduation. It’s a big deal in our little town. Every motel room and every parking place seemed to be filled by the crowd that came into town. After worship on Sunday, Patty and I drove to New York […]

Sheldon and Patty

worship space

Christ the Cornerstone

The daily lectionary that I use brought me to Ephesians 2:20-22 this morning.  Have you ever read those words?  They are actually carved into the base of our altar. I am constantly thankful that Pastor John Byerly and the leaders of this congregation put so much emphasis on art, when they were constructing the worship […]

Religion and Politics: Jerusalem

This was in the editorial column of this morning’s Richmond Times-Dispatch entitled, “Religion and Politics: Jerusalem.”  It sounds an awful lot like what St. Stephen folks hear from me! “References to religion and politics usually evoke images of the so-called religious right (see today’s lead editorial, for instance). In contemporary usage, “evangelical” describes a movement […]

A Perfect End

From the editorial column of the May 12, 2010 Richmond Times-Dispatch, entitled, “A Perfect End.” This sounds an awful lot like the preaching and teaching that St. Stephen folks hear from me! “The students assemble minutes before 10 on a brisk Thursday night. They meet on the steps of the south porch of the Memorial […]

True Love

IX. True Love 1. The Lord says: “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who persecute and blame you” (Mt. 5:44). 2. That person truly loves his enemy who is not upset at any injury which is done to himself, 3. but out of love of God is […]

Emptying Out

The town is emptying out of college students. Sigh… I think the ‘burg is a pretty boring place without the students. (Indeed, one of my hopes, now that a William and Mary student has been elected to City Council, is that Williamsburg might become more interesting than it now is. Compare Charlottesville as a college […]

What Up?

As I type this, I’m wearing a fleece vest. On May 10. What up with that? Two days ago, the high temperature was 90 degrees. This morning, when I got up, it was 42 degrees. “Global warming” incites such political polarization, with charges and counter charges about whether human activity is causing a warming trend. […]

So many words, so little time

I love to read, and there’s so much more to read than there’s time. I have books on the shelf that are waiting for me to read them, but then I come across a book review that sounds vitally interesting; so I buy that new book before I’ve opened the books I bought in the […]