Monthly Archives: September 2015

Last Lesson with My Teacher

  The last time I saw Betty was the day the charred skeleton of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City was imploded — May 24, 1995.  Terrorists had bombed the building April 19, 1995, leaving 168 dead, … Continue reading

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“We’re So Proud of You and Your Ministry!”

When I learned of Betty’s death, I felt compelled to drive out for her memorial service.  I didn’t know why exactly, but the pull was strong. I’d lost touch with Betty the last couple of years.  (My fault, not hers.)  … Continue reading

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Sermon: Imagining a New Heaven and a New Earth (9/27/15)

At last summer’s Annual meeting of the Southeast Conference of the UCC, a man named John Stewart (not THAT Jon Stewart!  This John has an “h.”) led a workshop called:  When Democracy Worked:  Reflections on the Passage of the Civil … Continue reading

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Singing Betty Home

Text to Allen:  I’m in the sanctuary at FBC.  My heart is racing! Allen:  I’m praying.  All will be well. Me:  Thanks.  Ron Lewis just started playing organ.  Settling down. Allen:  Good.  Still praying for you. Me:  There are several … Continue reading

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Loving Baptists

Driving out to Oklahoma for Betty Woodward’s memorial service, I had the sense that part of the reason for the trip was to forgive myself…which felt odd.  Forgive myself for what?  Now, I wonder if the thing for which I … Continue reading

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“Nexus Point”

In an email exchange with a friend, she described this moment as a “nexus point,” a time to take stock of things and identify what to keep and what to leave in Oklahoma.  Since arriving, driving around the campus, I’ve … Continue reading

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Moving Beyond Southern Seminary

(The insight about “moving past OBU to a Benedictine monastery” reminded me about this piece I wrote on a trip to Our Lady of Grace Monastery in Beech Grove, Indiana—two hours north of Louisville and Southern Seminary.  The piece was … Continue reading

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