Saturday, April 30, 2011

This has me tripping!

So, I'm reading tons of material to prepare to teach UCC History at Iliff. Not only am I reading current UCC materials, but also books from the perspective of those who either did not join the UCC at the merger or who have left since.

In a book by one such group, The First 50 years of the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference, in the section about why churches have left the UCC recently, my name appears! There is a paragraph that quotes an article in the Cleveland newspaper about my ordination in 1993. This is one of the reasons given by a church in Ohio that they left the UCC!

This is a relatively obscure book to anyone outside that particular denomination. To see my name was a trip.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Principles of the Christian Churches - predecesors of the UCC

(for those studying our UCC history, this is the group that joined in union with the Congregational Churches in 1931)
The following Principles are generally accepted and proclaimed by the
Christian churches. There is no uniform phrasing of them, however.


I. Christ the only Head of the Church.
II. Christian a sufficient name for the followers of Christ.
III. Christian character the only basis or test of fellowship and membership.
IV. The Holy Scriptures our only creed.
V. Individual interpretation of the scriptures, the privilege and duty of
every believer.
VI. The union of all the followers of Christ.

These six Principles have frequently been summed up in this one basic
principle :

"The Church of Christ is One; it embraces all those who have been accepted
of Christ as his real disciples; and, in its whole and in its parts, it should be so
organized, named, and governed as to include all and exclude none of those
whom Christ has so accepted."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Civility - 1925

I'm reading lots of history these days and came across this statement from a book called The Congregational Churches by Frederick L. Fagley, published in 1925:

"We long to be saved from meanness and from narrowness, to usefulness and character. We are under no illusion that this can be done for us by anyone else; that anyone, either God or man can buy it for us, or work it out for us and present us with it... Character is not a gift, but an attainment."

Of course, the text goes on to say of the Congregationalists, "The world has never known an emigration of people made up of men and women of such uniformly high character, such purity of motives and such resoluteness of determination."

Self-esteem doesn't seem to be a problem!