Showing posts with label Philadelphia Baptist Association. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Philadelphia Baptist Association. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Standing With, Praying For Victims of Las Vegas Massacre, and More

We here at Lansdowne Baptist Church are grieving right along with the rest of you following the horrific massacre in Las Vegas Sunday night. With 58 dead (as of this writing) and 528 wounded, we are stunned at how much harm one person willingly inflicts on an innocent crowd today. We pray for all those who fell to the gunman, their families, their friends, all who know or knew them. We stand by you in your grief. 

But prayer is a first step. It should always motivate us to action. Jesus called us to go out into all the world and that we must do. We are made for good work by the God who loves and saves us by grace alone. We will endeavor to do what we can to encourage others to work for the ways of love and mutual aid rather than hatred and mutual destruction. We work with our association, the Philadelphia Baptist Association, and our denomination, American Baptist Churches USA, to be peacemakers, as referred to in the Beatitudes.

Matthew 5:1-12: When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Please join us in every way you can to work for peace in our divided, hurting society.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

1000 Ministers March for Justice



A few images from the 1000 Ministers March for Justice of August 28, 2017, starting at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and ending at the Department of Justice. Ministers, priests, rabbis, and other faith leaders all marched. Over 3000 concerned faith leaders showed up to march for justice for every person oppressed, outcast, and marginalized in our turbulent society today, moving far beyond the expectations of those who organized the march. We came to express our desire to love God and love neighbors. We came to call on our elected leaders to do likewise.

Persistence was required for me as delays began when I arrived. I kept Luke 18:1-8 in mind as I persisted. I started at the Crystal City Underground parking lot in Alexandria, Virginia, took the Metro to the Mall, praying all the while for a person hit by a subway car at L'Enfante Plaza that day (and all persons impacted by that tragedy), headed on over to the MLK memorial down near the Lincoln Memorial (a substantial hike, praying to get there in time and represent my faith well), and joined the growing assembly of marchers there at 11:45 instead of 10:15 or so, as I had hoped. I was in time for the final speech at the memorial and the mile and a half march from the memorial to the Department of Justice. On the way we sang "This little light of mine" with some interesting verse variations, "Sanctuary," and called for justice in a variety of ways, given our various God-given talents. One quote from the event that resonated with those faith leaders present: “It’s time for moral leaders of all religions to get rid of their fear and their political laryngitis and stand up together,” said the Rev. Al Sharpton, who led the march with Martin Luther King III. “We agree that morality must be above party politics.”

I was gratified to meet some of my friends and colleagues there, and to know that others were present, including denominational leaders of American Baptist Churches USA, the Philadelphia Baptist Association, and fellow seminary graduates of Palmer Theological Seminary.

Disclaimer: The "unique" camera views are due to the fact that it was a sunny day and the screen didn't give me much of a view of what I was recording. Still, this will give you a small sense of what happened from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.



Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Nothing Too Wonderful for God


Sermon based on Genesis 18:1-15, focusing on hospitality, Abraham, Sarah, and God. Exploring closely how God's insistence on hospitality impacts upon all of us today during incredibly tense, inhospitable times. Includes current crises playing out in our community. Please watch, share, pray, and act.

Friday, May 12, 2017

310th Annual Philadelphia Baptist Association Meeting

On Saturday, May 6, 2017, the Philadelphia Baptist Association, the oldest religious association in the United States, celebrated 310 years together. To celebrate we explored various aspects of poverty and how to deal with it in our churches in and around Philadelphia. One member (many being pastors) from each church was asked to sign a historical document before the end of the proceedings, The Baptist Principle of Association. It was a beautiful and meaningful day.

It reads:
...we who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.  --Romans 12:5, NRSV

1. Being led by the Spirit, we create together, that which we cannot achieve alone.
2. Baptist Associational Life is understood as autonomous member congregations building connections for a common mission in Christ Jesus.
3. Being mindful of our diversity, we acknowledge our need for being connected as autonomous congregations and we will create and maintain safe spaces of mutuality, respect, support, and learning.
4. We will make quality relationships among our congregations our highest priority, so that we may experience the aliveness of our kindred spirit in Christ Jesus.
5. Our appreciation of Christian hospitality drives our commitment of being supportive of and fully present with one another.
6. We hold ourselves accountable for listening to member churches not currently active in associational life and for seeking to engage them in our work as their gifts are critical to our well-being.
7. With regularity and through a variety of methodologies, we seek to discern the leading of the Spirit as our congregations strive to make a difference in the world today.
8. We are mindful that people will become invested in and committed to that which they have a hand in creating.
9. We will pay attention to the ways that we gather (settings), and ensure to the best of our ability that members in every sector of the Association feel invited and represented in our life together.
10. We will intentionally focus our conversations on possibility, generosity, and restoration of community.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Domestic Violence Workshop: October 8, 2016

On Saturday, October 8, 2016, the Philadelphia Baptist Association’s (PBA) Domestic Violence Learning Community presents, a domestic violence workshop titled “Institutions: Hiding Behind the Lipstick: Silence No More.” The program takes place at Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Germantown (41 W. Rittenhouse Street, Philadelphia) at 11 a.m. This is a free event. 

This is a theatrical presentation addressing the institutions of Domestic Violence, including bullying in school, mental illness, drug addictions, incarcerations, religious bondage, and more. 

The desire is to continue to educate PBA churches about this epidemic, with the intent of helping "each one, reach one" person who might be suffering from domestic violence in their local congregation.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Friends Praying and Acting



For Baptist Heritage Sunday, this sermon explores the many ways Baptists have served in the world, and how we go about our business there. We Baptists have long grappled with major social issues, seeking God’s will through the Holy Spirit’s guidance on decisions like the end of slavery in the United States, the integration of freed slaves into society, women’s rights, and civil rights. Today we continue to seek God’s guidance in the challenges facing us. Like Barsabbas and Matthias, the vast majority of us do our work quietly behind the scenes.

Based on Acts 1:15-17, 21-26.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

LBC Attends PBA Annual Banquet Celebrating Mission


Lansdowne Baptist Church members attended the annual Philadelphia Baptist Association mission banquet this October. The emphasis was hospitality and outreach to the community, including the immigrant community. One of our own received recognition for her years of diligent service to a local interfaith food cupboard.

ABC-USA President Don Ng (taken stretching an iPad's camera
to its limits)
The president of American Baptist Churches USA, Don Ng, was the keynote speaker. He told the moving story of his father coming to the United States, fighting in World War II and receiving citizenship based on that sacrifice. Don Ng told of the struggles to bring his father's wife and son over from China to join him. The First Baptist Church of Boston assisted Mr. Ng in his efforts and helped his family after their arrival in the US. This church helped them navigate the rough waters faced by all immigrants to this country. Mr. Ng spoke movingly of the trouble he faced as a child growing up in America, a first generation child of immigrant parents who was not treated well or taken seriously by the school system he was raised in, even as a native-born son of the US. He called all churches to assist immigrants in their struggles and make a positive impact on their lives.


Thirty of the PBA's 129 churches were represented in that banquet hall at the Hilton Hotel in Philadelphia, providing over 600 members to celebrate in fellowship together. The youngest recipient of an award for community action was eleven and her efforts were well recognized. I wonder what we will accomplish together for next year? 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Philadelphia Baptist Association President Reflects on Ferguson, Missouri, Turmoil

The lack of relationships, or people distancing themselves from one another speaks clearly as I listen and watch the events unfold in Ferguson. The lack of representation of one sector of a community in the necessary functions of governance leaps to the foreground. I ask myself, where are the leaders? How did things stay so bad for so long? Where are the healthy relationships that lend to a well-functioning community?

The humanity of Michael Brown, the 18 year old shot dead in the street, seems not to be acknowledged. His body lay in the street for hours. Why? The pain of such indifference resonates with the experiences of so many people(s) who join in protest in Ferguson and across our nation. It is as if we think we can be a healthy society and ignore the plight of any member.

Today, I am saddened by the events in Missouri and I stand convicted. I need to tend to my relationships. Each human encounter is meaningful and I should be mindful of it. It is my perception that we have physically and emotionally abandoned one another and are largely a narcissistic society.

Today, I will tend to my relationships, my own humanity. I will not be dismissive!

The Apostle Paul writes, if one part suffers, every part suffers with it. (1st Corinthians 12:26)

Rev. Dr. James E. McJunkin, Jr., Executive Minister
PHILADELPHIA BAPTIST ASSOCIATION

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Philadelphia Baptist Association's Baby Manna Project

Lansdowne Baptist Church is a member church of the Philadelphia Baptist Association. Associations exist to allow individual churches to join together to do more than they could alone. The Philadelphia Baptist Association is the oldest in the United States, predating the country's founding, and having just celebrated its 307 year of active service. For more on the PBA and what it has done, see: http://philadelphiabaptist.info/?page_id=184

One of the many mission projects undertaken by the PBA is the Baby Manna project. This is an important mission designed to bring much needed formula and other baby products to those babies living in poverty in the Delaware Valley. Currently, there are over 12,000 babies born into poverty in the Delaware Valley every year. Most of these children are bottle fed as they must be cared for by someone other than their mothers. Costs for infant formula is high and rising. Impoverished caregivers have been forced to give hungry infants sugar water or watered down formula, which of course are poor substitutes for proper nutrition. Infant malnutrition leads to lasting and devastating impacts on children's lives.

One hundred percent of donations to the Baby Manna program are used by Philabundance to purchase infant formula and baby products made available to Philabundance's member agencies and the people they serve.

Have a positive impact on the lives of those who struggle to nurture their infants while struggling under the crushing impact of poverty in our region by donating to this worthy program.

You may contact the Philadelphia Baptist Association to find out how to contribute at:

8711 Ridge Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  19128
www.philadelphiabaptist.org

Or you may go directly to Philabundance at this address: http://www.philabundance.org/programs-2/baby-manna/