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September 2014

On Being

The American radio show, ‘On Being’ opens up the animating questions at the center of human life: What does it mean to be human, and how do we want to live? Animateur Krista Tippett explores these questions in their richness and complexity, in 21st-century lives and endeavors of her guests. In this episode, she interviews cellist Yo-Yo Ma, one of the most famous musicians in the world. In this intimate conversation, he shares his philosophy of curiosity about life, and of hospitality. ‘Whatever one practices for,’ he says, ‘we have this greater purpose, and that is why we want this communal moment to be really special for all of us because, otherwise, why bother to have come at all. It’s not about proving anything, it’s about sharing something.’

[The Episcopal Church, Office of Public Affairs] The House of Bishops of The Episcopal Church opened its fall meeting September 17 in the Diocese of Taiwan. Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori celebrated at the opening Eucharist, and preached the following sermon: "We thank you that by water and the Holy Spirit you have bestowed upon these your servants the forgiveness of sin, and have raised them to the new life of grace. Sustain them, O Lord, in your Holy Spirit. Give them an inquiring and discerning heart, the courage to will and to persevere, a spirit to know and to love you, and the gift of joy and wonder in all your works. Amen."

Holy Cross Day 2014

It goes without saying that the Cross is pretty important to Christians. It is the chief symbol of Christian faith. It occupies a central place in our houses of worship. You may display a cross in your home. We hang crosses around our necks. Christians make the sign of the cross when they pray or make some other act of devotion. There is no question of the importance of the Cross to those who call themselves Christian. This has been since the very beginnings of the Christian movement. In fact, the Cross is one of the major themes of the New Testament. The Gospels themselves are largely passion narratives, focused on the crucifixion and on Jesus’ last days leading up to it.

It is a great pleasure and privilege to preach the Gospel here with you today, and to share in this wonderful celebration of the Holy Eucharist. As I was thinking about this --I was told that I had nine minutes maximum -- I thought that I would preach on something that I have never preached on before today. In the middle of the Gospel, Jesus says to his disciples, ‘Truly, I say to you, what you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and what you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.’ We normally call this the power of the keys – remember St. Peter was given the power of the keys – and every bishop’s shield, including mine, has a pair of crossed keys in it. It is the power to loose and to bind.

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