Uncategorized

The Opportunity of the Easter Season

Easter Sunday, and the whole of the Easter season, is always an opportunity for the parish, but never more so than this year, given the past two years of our COVID experience. Whatever size or style of your parish you will be welcoming visitors and first-timers, not to mention parishioners returning to church for the […]

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Communication

Responding to Current Events at Church

The past two years have brought us all historic and largely unfortunate events and new realities: COVID-19, Black Lives Matter, escalating urban violence, a contentious and contested presidential election, deepening partisan divisions, economic instability, weather-related calamities, and now the tragedy in Ukraine. And, given cable news and social media, we are more aware of these […]

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Uncategorized

Saint Michael Defend Them in Battle

Our hearts break for the Ukrainian people, especially the overwhelmingly sad suffering of children, painfully on display with the evening news. All of us in the Nativity community are praying for an end to the conflict and the restoration of national boundaries that reflect the autonomy of the Ukrainian people. But no matter what the […]

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Stewardship

An Annual Appeal

A “spiritual campaign” is about getting people moving in the same direction for a greater purpose. It’s about accomplishing something that we could not do on our own, or without intentional direction. A spiritual campaign is marked by focused attention that leads to growth and momentum. By the end of a spiritual campaign, members of […]

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Discipleship | Making Church Matter

Growing Through Audacious Goals

I’m not entirely sure where the number even came from. One moment, we were talking generally about the desire to increase participation in our small group program. The next, my associate Tom Corcoran was declaring in front of the whole congregation and our online audience that our goal for this year was to get 1,000 […]

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Discipleship | Leadership

Who’s Stealing the Joy at Your Parish?

For our first message series of the new year, we’ve been looking at “thieves” of joy: things that threaten to steal our joy: things like worry, disappointment, fear, anger, rejection, and all the rest. The purpose of the series is to name those thieves and then identify strategies that will protect us and help us […]

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What's new at Nativity

An Overview of 2022 at Nativity

After two years of COVID everybody is really ready for a return to normal, which may or may not come our way in 2022. Regardless of the circumstances in our community, however restrictive the state and county mandates, and mindful of the very real fears of many parishioners, we intend to march into the new […]

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Vision | What's new at Nativity

The Best of 2021

It has been a unique and, frankly, strange year that now comes to a close. And while the restrictions we faced this year were certainly less strict than those experienced in 2020, they certainly were challenging. Mandates and masks, pro-vaxers v. anti-vaxers created confusion and conflict. And from a staff point of view, there was […]

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Evangelization

Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas (Eve)

Thus says the LORD: You, Bethlehem-Ephrathah too small to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel. – Micah 5:1 It was the prophet Micah who foretold the birthplace of the Messiah. Like other Old Testament prophets, his is a challenging message […]

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Evangelization

The Opportunity of Advent 2021

Advent is far and away my favorite liturgical season of the year. Perhaps it’s because I was ordained just before Advent and the season was my first experience as a priest. Perhaps it’s because the days are getting shorter, the evenings darker and colder, and all that seems perfectly matched with the themes and readings […]

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