Category: World Church

Statement on Recent Gun Violence

Statement on Recent Gun Violence

May 25, 2022 | USA Team of Apostles

The USA Team of Apostles released this statement on the recent mass shootings in the USA.

To Community of Christ Leaders, Mission Centers, Members, and Friends:

Community of Christ actively endeavors to share the peace of Jesus Christ in a troubled world. This call is grounded in the Enduring Principles, including Unity in Diversity, Blessings of Community, the Worth of All Persons, and Responsible Choices.

We join other faith organizations and communities who grieve for those families that lost loved ones in recent mass shootings. We unite in prayer for those affected by recent mass shootings in Buffalo, New York; Uvalde, Texas; and too many other locations. Sadly, the New England Journal of Medicine in April indicated firearm-related violence is now the leading cause of death for US children and adolescents.

We denounce needless violence that ends and shatters lives. We pray for wisdom as we consider our individual response as disciples in dialogue and action. We affirm World Conference Resolution 1270 urging firearms be used for sporting and professional purposes only. We uphold the urgent need for “members and leaders (to) discuss the role nonviolence plays in the pursuit of ‘peace on and for the Earth’ (Doctrine and Covenants 165:1d) and in the life and mission of the church” (World Conference Resolution 1319).

Doctrine and Covenants 163:2a invites all to “strive to be faithful to Christ’s vision of the peaceable Kingdom of God on earth. Courageously challenge cultural, political, and religious trends that are contrary to the reconciling and restoring purposes of God. Pursue peace.”

In the spirit of Jesus, the peaceful One, we encourage all to share their perspectives with their state and national representatives that together we might courageously call for peace, reconciliation, and healing in our world.


<strong>Getting Shameless about Faith and Sex</strong>

Getting Shameless about Faith and Sex

By Sean Langdon

In January 2019, Nadia Bolz-Weber released “Shameless: A Sexual Reformation”. The description for this book reads as follows, “Christians are obsessed with sex. But not in a good way. For nearly two thousand years, this obsession has often turned destructive, inflicting pain, suffering, and guilt on countless people of all persuasions and backgrounds. In Shameless, Bolz-Weber calls for a reformation. To make her case, she offers experiences from her own life and stories from her parishoners alongside biblical theology to explore what the church has taught, and the harm those teachings have caused.” This book changed my life and had a deep impact on my ministry.

Not long after its release, some friends in our mission center and I went to her book tour in Portland. She was electrifying. The truths that she spoke had us clinging to every word. She isn’t a conventional, “cookie cutter” minister which is part of what gravitates me towards her. She’s real and authentic and herself, even when that isn’t comfortable for others. And I love that. And I can relate to that. This book helped me better understand the issues as well as begin healing the parts of me that that have experienced trauma because of how much of Christianity approaches the topic of sex. So much harm has been done because of the messaging and shame that is inflicted on others because of this. Within Community of Christ, I didn’t get a lot of that but instead I got nothing. This was also harmful as the only religious messaging I received growing up were the harmful voices that are out there when approaching this layered topic.

A few months ago, I was invited by Carla Long to be a co-host with her for Community Chat. Community Chat is like an online talk show where we talk about things related to Community of Christ and faith. Our most recent episode was inspired by this book. I encourage everyone to watch it and to please do so with an open mind. Even if you don’t agree or are not comfortable with talking about sex and faith together, it is important to understand why it is imperative for others that these kinds of conversations take place. In this episode, you’ll see a familiar face in Tami Perryman as she lived in Bend, Oregon, for a few years while her husband Craig worked for the congregation there. Joining Carla Long and I is also Jamiann Smith. It is my hope that we can begin to have healthy, open conversations about topics like these in our faith community.

Watch here: https://youtu.be/BNu7MxzDgx8


World Church Bridge of Hope Update

World Church Bridge of Hope Update

Originally published by Community of Christ May 5, 2021.

We have amazing news! As of 31 December, 2020, the church has raised $88 million toward its $120 million Bridge of Hope goal—an increase of $12 million since June 30. Thank you to those in all fields of the church around the world who are working so diligently to meet this important goal. The next update will be provided in September 2021.

As a reminder, funding the retirement responsibility is the first priority for Bridge of Hope. Growing endowments is the second. 

Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday

Double the Good

This year a generous matching contribution of $200,000 has been pledged for this event. For example, a $25.00 contribution becomes $50.00.  

Any size donation to Worldwide Mission Tithes helps bring hope to people around the world! In 2020, contributions have meant:

  • COVID-19 crisis relief and oblation aid, including $100,500 to Haiti, Africa, Nepal, India, and Central and South America. And, a total of $63,614 in oblation aid in the United States. 
  • Ten chartered World Church teams with 136 members who provide guidance, advocacy, and education on Earth stewardship, diversity and inclusion, health and wholeness, spiritual formation, and peace and justice—among others.

How to Participate 

Those in the USA can contribute to Worldwide Mission Tithes: 

Online 

Visit eTithing to give. 

Text 

Text GIVE to 844-964-1444 and follow the instructions. 

Mail 

Mail checks to Community of Christ International Headquarters, Presiding Bishopric, 1001 W. Walnut St., Independence, MO 64050. Mark the check “Giving Tuesday.” 

Please email Presiding Bishopric at International Headquarters to ensure your gift is included in Giving Tuesday totals. 

Engage in the Generosity Cycle

Engage in the Generosity Cycle

The Generosity Cycle
Originally published in Community of Christ Announcements Sept 28, 2020

We would like to invite your congregation or mission center to participate in the Generosity Cycle
October 11, 2020 -November 15, 2020
The Church celebrates various seasons, such as Advent and Lent, where our gaze is focused in a certain direction and we spend time in meaningful reflection and preparation.
For six weeks, the Generosity Cycle provides an annual opportunity to intentionally move together through a season of generosity. The four phases of the Generosity Cycle: Invite, Discover, Respond and Reflect encourage us to remember God’s extravagant grace and generosity, to discover a deeper joy in living Christ’s mission, and to respond through whole-life stewardship as we reflect on our lives as generous disciples.
HOW CAN YOUR CONGREGATION OR MISSION CENTER PARTICIPATE?
Disciples’ Generous Response moments focused on the four phases of the Generosity Cycle starting October 11th can be found here.
Additional resources including a video and study guides are available here.
If you have questions or need more information about how your congregation or mission center can participate, please contact MissionFunding@CofChrist.org, 1-800-884-7526
You’re Invited to two Video Premiers with Jan Kraybill

You’re Invited to two Video Premiers with Jan Kraybill

Originally published in Community of Christ Announcements Sept 1, 2020

Jan Kraybill, Community of Christ organist-in-residence, is all ears. And hands, and feet.

The Grammy-nominated performer often enjoys hearing and answering her audience’s questions, especially if she’s playing a demonstration concert at the Temple or Auditorium in Independence, Missouri, USA. But because the world is dealing with a pandemic, her next performances — hands and feet dancing across the massive instruments — are for online audiences.

The good news: Questions are still welcome!

More good news: Kraybill will take video viewers behind the scenes, inside these massive instruments, to view aspects never seen by live audiences.

During free internet premiers at 7:30 p.m. Central Daylight Time on both 13 September at the Temple organ and at the Auditorium organ 14 September, Kraybill will be online to take queries about the instruments or the music she played. The videos were recorded in Independence, but Kraybill’s responses will be live.

Watch her concerts on the Community of Christ Facebook page or the Community of Christ YouTube channelViewers can ask questions in the comments areas during the premieres. The videos will remain on the church’s YouTube channel for later viewing.

Watching the videos is free.

Here’s the music Kraybill plays.

On the Temple Casavant organ in Independence (13 September):

  • Prelude in B Major, Op. 7, No. 1 by Marcel Dupré
  • Adagio e dolce (second movement) from Trio Sonata No. 3, BWV 527 by Johann Sebastian Bach
  • Berceuse by Louis Vierne
  • Grand-Choeur Dialogué by Eugène Gigout
  • Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring by J.S. Bach
  • Toccata from Symphony No. 5 by Charles-Marie Widor

On the Aeolian-Skinner organ in the Auditorium (14 September):

  • Fanfare in C Major by Henry Purcell
  • Chorale Prelude on Ein Feste Burg by Johann Pachelbel
  • Allegro (first movement) from Concerto in F, Op. 4, No. 4 by Georg Frederic Händel
  • Intermezzo on an Irish Air, Op. 189, No. 4 by Charles Villiers Stanford
  • Fantasy on Ein Feste Burg, Op. 65, No. 47 by Sigfrid Karg-Elert
Statement on the Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Statement on the Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

From Community of Christ Announcements posted 8/6/2020

August 6 and 9 mark the somber 75th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan. World Conference Resolution 1178, Nuclear Arms Reduction; and WCR 1303, Action toward Nuclear Weapons Abolition, encourage the church to denounce the violence of nuclear weapons and acknowledge the suffering they cause. 

We are grateful for the global hibakusha (survivors) who have courageously borne witness, often amid great difficulty. 

As a people dedicated to peace, reconciliation, and healing of the spirit, Community of Christ joined 189 organizations that signed a statement in opposition to nuclear weapons, making it one of the largest and most diverse interfaith proclamations against nuclear weapons to date. 

The signatories, coordinated by Faith Communities Concerned About Nuclear Weapons, remind us that we can act together from a place of determination, resilience and joy to make the world a different place. Jewish, Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Jain and indigenous voices came together on this statement.

Doctrine and Covenants 161:2a reminds us to: “Become a people of the Temple—those who see violence but proclaim peace, who feel conflict yet extend the hand of reconciliation, who encounter broken spirits and find pathways for healing.”

The church continues to find those pathways through its prayers and ongoing programs, Toward Jesus the Peaceful One; a series of internet lectures from Europe, Peaceful Humanity—A New Creation; and the Daily Prayer for Peace, among others.

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