Of Casting Off Mantles

By Daniel P. Richards | October 21, 2021

Sunday brings the Gospel of Blind Bartimaeus who cried out to Jesus who called Bartimaeus to him, and Blind Bartimaeus “casting off his mantle” came to him. The New Revised Standard translates it as “throwing off his cloak.” See Mark 10. In ancient Israel, people usually wore at minimum of single undergarment that was usually…

The Feast of Teresa of Ávila

By Daniel P. Richards | October 13, 2021

I was born on the feast of Teresa of Ávila. Go ahead and Wikipedia her. We will wait.   Her primary book is The Interior Castle, and it is a seminal text for anyone looking to move into a more contemplative prayer life. We studied it last year on Wednesday mornings with the help of R. Thomas…

Rule of Life

By Daniel P. Richards | October 7, 2021

The Terrible Thing about a Rule of Life For every spiritual discipline, there is a cost.  For fasting, there is hunger. For Bible Study, there is the time it takes and the intellectual work of reading and thinking.  The meta-discipline is writing and living by a Rule of Life. The concept actually goes back to the…

Change

By Daniel P. Richards | September 30, 2021

Dear People of Christ Church,  “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” – J.R.R. Tolkien  When a friend asked me if he could put my name into the process in Upper…

Endurance

By Daniel P. Richards | September 23, 2021

Before I was anything else, I was a writer and a runner. They both came naturally and thoughtlessly. I wasn’t really competitive and still am not. But I could pass hours in lousy weather running down empty roads in peace. Running sometimes hurts. Actually it always hurt at some point on a long enough run.…

#OperationAfghanWelcome

By The Rev. Dr. Perry M. Pauley | September 16, 2021

Over the last several weeks, we have mentioned that our partners at Episcopal Migration Ministries, Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest, and the International Rescue Committee are all seeking urgent help to support Afghan refugees who are already beginning to arrive in Arizona. Over the next several months, families will be arriving in Arizona with…

Rector’s Note 9-9-21

By Daniel P. Richards | September 9, 2021

Twenty-five years ago last February I was ordained in a little Southern Baptist Church in Buckeye, Arizona. Three years earlier I had gone down front in the church to dedicate my life to ministry as a high school senior. It was then an act of trust that God had called me into something larger than…

Clean

By Daniel P. Richards | August 26, 2021

Read Sunday’s Gospel.  Jesus is against you washing your hands.   Okay, not really. When you read the text, Jesus is against the religious leaders setting these unimportant traditions as the benchmarks of holiness.   Clean and unclean is not caused by what you eat or do not eat. Cleanliness here refers to what matters…

Things Known and Unknown

By Daniel P. Richards | August 19, 2021

The prayers of confession often include the plea for forgiveness for things “done and left undone.” The Psalmists often asks God to search their heart and to “cleanse me from my secret faults.” These prayers point us towards one of the strange things about being human beings: there are things going on in  us that…

Looking Up

By Daniel P. Richards | August 12, 2021

Have you heard? The news is always getting our attention with bad news because we are wired by biology to pay attention to things that may keep up out of danger. When we hear that there may be something dangerous, we have to listen!  My favorite example of this was a commercial I heard at…