Category Archives: Worship

Tomorrow is Pentecost

Tomorrow is Pentecost Sunday. The day’s liturgical color is red, so it’s a great day to wear red to church. We’ll also celebrate Holy Communion (because we’ll be outside the first Sunday of June) and welcome Liz Collins into membership. I look forward to being in worship with you, whether you’re in person or online.

Muted Mother’s Day Celebrations

It made me happy to have my mom in worship with us two days ago. I love my mom, she was great when I was growing up and I enjoy her company even more now that I’m an adult. But I’ve also learned that no everyone can say the same. This article from Charlotte Clymer provides a different perspective that helps explain why we don’t go all in on Mother’s Day celebrations at College Avenue UMC the way some churches do.


Voices: He Descended to the Dead

“He descended to the dead.” We say those words almost every Sunday as part of The Apostles’ Creed, but what do they mean? My explanation has always been that they signify that Jesus was really dead. But now you don’t have to take my word for it. Here’s Oxford scholar Allister McGrath in his book I Believe: Exploring the Apostles’ Creed:

“He descended to the dead.” What does this mean? It is a statement of the belief that Jesus really did die. For the New Testament writers, Christ was not raised “from death” (an abstract idea) but “from the dead.” . . . The Greek term literally means “out of those who are dead.” In other words, Jesus shared the fate of all those who have died. . . . Jesus really was human like us. His divinity does not compromise his humanity. Being God incarnate did not mean he was spared from tasting death. He did not merely seem to die; he really did die and joined those who had died before him. [1]

He descended to the dead. Jesus really did die, but, of course, that was not the end of the story.

[1] Allister McGrath, I Believe: Exploring the Apostles’ Creed (Downers Grove, Illinois, 1997), Kindle, 61.