Love your neighbor as your self. Flip the opposite cheek. And take the plank out of your individual eye earlier than you are concerned about another person’s.
For those who’ve ever been to a Christian church, you are in all probability conversant in the widespread classes they educate. Nevertheless it’s not every single day that pastors additionally handle xenophobia, transphobia, police brutality and varied refugee crises. The Clackamas United Church of Christ in Milwaukie, Oregon, nonetheless, doesn’t draw back from any of those matters.
Under, you will discover a number of the greatest messages this progressive church has posted exterior of their congregation to make it clear to everybody the place they stand on sure points. Preserve studying to additionally discover a dialog we had been fortunate sufficient to have with Pastor Adam to Eric, and you’ll want to upvote the indicators you need to go to in Clackamas this Sunday!
Even if in case you have by no means set foot in a Christian church in your life, you might be conversant in a number of the values. However sadly, messages of affection and understanding are typically misplaced in translation or distorted, and churchgoers are left with a nasty style of their mouths. Feeling judged and undesirable is the very last thing anybody ought to really feel when attending a service, so Clackamas United Church of Christ works to ensure everybody feels welcome there. This congregation, which prides itself on being a inclusive communityanybody and everyone seems to be welcome to attend the companies, simply as Jesus needed.
Reverend Adam Ericksen has been a pastor at CUCC since 2018, and he maintains an open thoughts in entrance of his church. Incomes his Masters in Theological Research from Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary, his thesis was titled “Love and Nonviolence in Christianity and Islam,” and his progressive views ensured that CUCC was welcoming to all.
We reached out to Pastor Adam to listen to extra about what Clackamas is all about, and fortunate for us, he was pleased to talk with Dijbi. The final time we talked with him was about two years in the past, so first, we needed to know if there are any updates on Clackamas that he can share.
“Our signal messages have impressed folks from all around the world to affix our interactive on-line companies in our Facebook page and Channel on YouTube. We have now folks from our hometown of Portland to Toronto to London to Lima to Brisbane,” shared Pastor Adam. “This can be a world on-line church. Since returning to our native campus worship companies earlier this 12 months, we’re excited to proceed our on-line service.”
We additionally requested the pastor if he believed this signal introduced many individuals to his church who won’t in any other case have entered the door. “The signal has been an enormous affect in our congregation,” shared Pastor Adam. “Individuals from across the Portland space joined the native church due to the signal. Individuals got here from all around the world due to the indicators. Individuals typically say they might by no means enter a church, however our indicators make them really feel comfy about our church.
In the case of the place Pastor Adam and his crew get their concepts for indicators, he instructed Dijbi that they arrive “from the Bible (particularly passages about social justice), from present occasions , and from progressive Christian theologians,” including that they are not wanting concepts!
We additionally requested the pastor if there are any misconceptions about Christianity or the church that he wish to dispel. “Individuals on the spiritual proper who’re homophobic and ‘anti-woke’ are a minority inside Christianity,” he stated. “They only occur to be very loud. There are various progressive Christians who’re elevating our power to indicate assist and solidarity within the wrestle for anti-racist insurance policies and insurance policies that affirm LGBTQIA2+ brothers and sisters.”
And in the event you’ve ever had a lower than favorable expertise at a church, Pastor Adam understands the place you are coming from. However he desires you to know that you’ll all the time be welcome in Clackamas. “God additionally understands. Generally probably the most trustworthy factor we will do is to reject the false picture of God as a homophobic, racist tyrant,” shared the pastor. “That god is an idol. However if you wish to discover God or faith or spirituality, there are a lot of church buildings within the United Church of Christ and the Disciples of Christ and different denominations that remorse the injury Christianity has typically finished in our historical past and are attempting to do higher. In case you are excited about becoming a member of others in that journey, we might like to welcome you on the journey.”
We’re huge followers of the indicators Pastor Adam and his crew share in entrance of CUCC, so this is not the primary time we have interviewed him on Dijbi. About 4 years in the past, we caught up with Pastor Adam, and he shared slightly bit about how the indicators began within the first place. “Individuals have seen our constructing, however they do not know what our values are,” he defined. “So we began a fundraiser for the signal, and I began posting these messages. Individuals began stopping as they drove by to thank me for the messages. However I did not know it might have such an influence on-line.”
“Within the midst of the world’s ache and all of the hate, persons are thirsting for one thing deeper,” Pastor Adam continued. “The reality of the Gospel is that each one persons are cherished. The sin is after we begin treating some folks and teams as if they don’t seem to be cherished. Jesus was most crucial of those that used faith as an excuse to marginalize others. We’re simply trying to observe Jesus one of the best ways we will.”
Earlier than Pastor Adam got here to Clackamas, their numbers had been slightly decrease, however he thought it was as a result of folks weren’t certain what the messages and values of the congregation had been. “I made a decision that we should be daring in our message of affection and inclusion, particularly for the marginalized, particularly religiously,” he beforehand instructed Dijbi. “My purpose is to be half of a bigger motion that’s reframing or redefining Christianity in order that it’s based mostly on God’s love for all folks.”
Clearly, as we will see from the virality of the indicators exterior of Clackamas each week, Pastor Adam has finished an important job in fulfilling his mission. “There are such a lot of of us making an attempt to get this message out and if we do it within the identify of God or within the identify of humanity or within the identify of God and humanity — I say amen, let’s do it,” he beforehand stated. shared. “I simply need folks to know that God loves them, and we love them and we’re for them. Sounds tacky, however that is the principle message!”
We hope you get pleasure from this checklist of useful and inspiring indicators, pandas. Though not each church on the earth is keen to share such messages, I believe Jesus could be pleased with them. Proceed to vote on the indicators you’d prefer to see exterior of your individual native congregation, after which in the event you’re excited about seeing extra smart and uplifting messages Clackamas has shared previously, you’ll find Bored’s final article Panda that includes within the church right here!