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From the Pastor - Newsletter June 2018

06.05.18 | News | by Vivian McCarthy

    I’m writing this on the day after Pentecost.  What an amazing celebration of the fire of the Holy Spirit!  One of the highlights for me was at the 10:30 service when Madison and Megan Maxwell danced to a song written by a friend of mine for the clergy women of our annual conference.

    Let the Fire Dance by Jan Powers

    View the dance and heart the song from our Pentecost celebration here:

    Let the fire dance. 

    See it whirling. 


    Let the fire dance – wild, unfurling.


    Let the flames leap up within you, curling round and round,

    free to burn, twist and turn, glowing colors abound!


    Let the fire cleanse your spirit, burning the chaff away. 


    Set it free, flagrantly free. 


    Sin can’t stand in its way!


    Orange tongues to lick our wounds, amber to join our cries,


    Heat and warm, light and life, chasing away our sighs.


    Let the fire dance.  See it whirling. 


    Let the fire dance – wild, unfurling.


    Let it dance and dance and dance and dance….

    At the time that this song was written, clergywomen were experiencing a great deal of prejudice – for some more damaging than for others. Churches didn’t want women in the pulpit. Quite a few male clergy felt threatened (although quite a few were also excellent mentors). Many people, both lay and clergy, felt that Paul’s writings explicitly forbade women to be leaders. That verse that says women should be quiet in church and being submissive was very popular. (I find it ironic that this verse is in 1 Corinthians 14 – yes, the chapter immediately following the great Love Chapter!  You should probably know that I’m smiling as I type this.) It was a hard time.

    For me, my friend’s words are both prayer and celebration – for the current day. Prayer for the power of the Holy Spirit to transcend whatever keeps us from God, empower every one of God’s children to be and to do what God calls them to, and for the fire to light the way even when it is dark.

    The celebration is that, despite the moments when life is hard, the Holy Spirit whooshes and dances onto the scene and brings new life. That can be personal, and that can be corporate. As Jan wrote:  sin can’t stand in its (the Holy Spirit’s) way!

    As the girls danced yesterday, my spirit soared!