Lost in Translation

Lost in Translation

Some translations are better than others.  (From our June 7th newsletter):

"You can't tell me that bad theology doesn't kill people."

Bri Crumbley, a fellow Gilead-ite who works at Interfaith Youth Core, was sitting across from me (Rebecca) at Rogers Park Social. I thought, "Yeah. The stakes don't get much clearer than that."

All of us are translating all the time, making sense of what's going on around us. Some of us, forced to do more translation than others, are pretty adept at it: "Every time you say 'husband and wife,' I translate it as..." Institutions and communities, including the Church, do translation too, of ancient texts and stories, of traditions and practices, of how to live in faith and what it means: that's theology. Some translations are, to put it mildly, better than others. For the next few weeks, we'll be telling stories of some of the bad, ugly, and dangerous translations we've heard, and  — for the next few weeks and beyond — we'll keep on trying to do the work of good, beautiful, generative translations.

Read more here...

Learning New Languages (June 4 sermon)

Learning New Languages (June 4 sermon)

On Pentecost Sunday, June 4, Matt Richards was our guest preacher.  Matt has an M.Div/MSW from the University of Chicago. He’s Program Director of Care2Prevent at the U of C, where they take a holistice approach to providing comprehensive care and prevention education for young people living with HIV/STI and individuals who are most at-risk for new infections. A Gilead regular, he also shares a back porch with co-pastor Rebecca Anderson where they discuss theology and men.

He agreed to share his sermon and story here. From Matt's sermon:

"...I realize now that Rob—like all of us—needed new languages and stories for making sense of his vulnerability, of reconciling to a past that could not be changed, of finding peace in relationships with people that will never say the words of apology that we so badly need them to utter. I realize now that the stories we tell about our lives have the ability to harm us or to save us.  They can make it easier or almost impossible to ask for the help that we need.  Gilead talks about how stories can save lives.  I wish I had realized that sooner."

Read the rest.

And if you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, or would like emotional support, please reach out to us at info@gileadchicago.org or to the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, at 800-273-8255.

 

 

 

 

Know-and-be-known dinners

Know-and-be-known dinners

Who even is Gilead?  Let's get to know each other!

Josh Lee is coordinating an effort to get us sharing meals and conversations over the next few months. No agenda except conversation at a time and in a neighborhood that works for you.  Here's how it'll happen:

  • Go to this Google doc.
  • Some lovely souls have signed up to host. Maybe you will too!
  • Find a date and place that's good for you. Hosts provide a little bit of info to help you decide (is there a cat in the house?, is their place kid-friendly?, etc.)
  • Add your name(s), email, and what you'd like to bring to share.
  • As the date gets closer, your host will let you know any details or last minute info (where to park...)

No place like home.

No place like home.

(From our latest newsletter)

There's an idea in the book of Hebrews that the human condition is marked by a yearning for home. As the writer there says, we are all "strangers and foreigners on the earth," desiring a better country.

So while we're at the end of our month of Wanderlust, we're obviously in no way at the end of our journeys, as individuals or as a new church. Still: on Sunday, we'll hear and tell stories of finding and making home, of seeing home with new eyes, of never going home again...(read more here)

 

Know-it-all Mama Bunny God

Know-it-all Mama Bunny God

Well, shucks.

We could've been posting our newsletters here all along! Now we actually will. Here's the most recent. From that link, you can also get to "past issues." This is how this one starts:

Good news/bad news:
God is everywhere.

We're halfway through our month of Wanderlust: detours, roadblocks, and shortcuts on your spiritual journey. This past week, the good news/bad news that wherever you go, God is there, like that relentless mother in The Runaway Bunny. (See also: Sufjan Stevens' song "Seven Swans." Listen to the end. Terrifying.)...

Read the rest here and/or subscribe to get your own.

A Non-religious Clown Goes to Church

A Non-religious Clown Goes to Church

When Maria Vorhis agreed to tell a story at Gilead's third ever worship service, she didn't know The Today Show would be there recording. Firstly, because they weren't planning on it yet, and then later because Rebecca forgot to tell her. Whoops.

But it all worked out.

Maria, a Chicago writer/performer, filmmaker, and teaching artist, wrote about the experience so beautifully over on her blog. You should read all the way to the end. It's worth it and says so much about why we think Gilead needs to exist!

As seen on TV?!?

As seen on TV?!?

Did you end up here because you saw us on The Today Show? You're not wrong: that was us, talking about a church where we tell true stories that save lives, share good food, and make beautiful creative worship together.

Wanna find out more? Subscribe to our newsletter, get in touch to have a coffee or beer with a pastor, or come to church!

At Gilead, we want to be church for and with people who’ve been turned out, turned off, or just left cold by church. We believe God welcomes all — and we have the stories of Jesus hanging out with all the “wrong” folks to prove it — and so we do too. 

Whoever you are, whatever your story is, you are welcome here. 

We are a "congregation-in-formation" of the Chicago Metropolitan Association of the UCC (United Church of Christ). That's church-ese "we're not in this alone. We're got a history, and community, and body of people pulling for us and working alongside us." We're also in relationship with The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), kissing cousins of the UCC in the Protestant church family tree.