Happy Summer! As July gets underway, I am reminded of the blessing of seasons. I am particularly thankful for the change of pace summer brings. Longer daylight, and shorter weeks, upended schedules and flexible bed times.
The past months have been a learning experience for our family. During one of my recent devotions from the Men's Devotional Bible, I read about waiting and patience. Those two words spoke to me and I have been thinking a lot about them.
Waiting is one of the hardest things we ever have to do. We wait in traffic. We wait in the doctor's office (in the waiting room!). We wait to hear news--good or bad.
The last few months, I have been reading and studying Joshua. The battle narratives of the Old Testament often contain rich imagery and lessons paralleling God's working in the church today. It has been a source of great encouragement, challenge and correction for me and has specifically given me great insight in the midst of my transition out of one ministry and the beginning of a new one.
Jonathan and Cara Pardo have been a big part of CTK Music through the years. In addition to making music in several bands and groups around the city, they can often be found playing with the music team at CTK Cambridge. Here is a glimpse into how they got here, their music process and their love for hymns and worship.
Jonathan: Both Cara and I have had similar upbringings regarding music. We’re both singers, went to jazz school, and no longer sing jazz. To be fair, I only went to jazz school for about a year and a half, whereas Cara gave it up after getting an entire degree in it.
Cara: Heeeeeey. At least I have a degree to show all the people in the jazz club that I’m not singing to.
It was Christmas vacation, two and a half years ago. My family and I were leaving the movie theatre at Legacy Place, in Dedham, MA, where we had just watched the movie, ‘The Penguins of Madagascar’. At this particular location, there are escalators that take you from the parking lot on the lower level to the theatre on the second level. After our movie ended, we made our way back toward the escalators. I was at the bottom of this escalator when I realized our older daughter, Mya, was standing at the top. “Oh, hey up there,” I said, with a smile, “C’mon down, Mya.” "No. I’m scared of escalators,” she replied.
What am I doing with my life? What should I do with my life? I had recently moved to Cambridge after accepting a job offer at a consulting firm, and two months in I was questioning the purpose of it all. It was frustrating – neither the miraculous circumstances that had brought me here nor what was supposed to be the ‘honeymoon’ phase of starting an exciting position could push these thoughts away. I
If you watched a silent video of my life, it may have looked familiar. Kid stuff, work stuff, house stuff, church stuff, too light on the marriage stuff. Days, weeks, and weekends were full. I would fall asleep (very) early every night. Two young kids, busy job, no local family—makes sense, right? I was tired. Yep. And, I was hiding.
I remember the moment well. I had just informed my Session that I would be resigning as their Sr. Pastor to become a Boston church-planter for CTK. I had no financial support and no real idea about how to get support, and I was walking away from my job!
A few families from CTK Newton recently used their February vacation week to travel to the Dominican Republic and work with missionaries there. They helped to build a house for a widow that was taking care of her grandchildren with special needs. They also worked with orphans and taught English. It was the first trip that adults took their children to serve with them, and was a great experience for all. Here are some of their impressions from the trip.
Emily Leighton, a member of Grace South Shore, recently shared her story about her battle with cancer, and the ways her congregation and community have showed love through this difficult time.
My name is Malcolm, and I am a junior at Boston College High School. Christ the King Dorchester has completely transformed my faith in just the short year I have attended. When I was a freshman, my faith had stalled, and my relationship with God did not seem important in my life.
Recently, CTK pastors spoke of how encouraged they were to see the people in their congregations loving their neighbors. This is the first in a series of stories from various congregations, meant to encourage our church about what God is doing in our city.
December 18, 1999, four or five months late, the Downs family of eight with three pets (having left three behind) departed Winston-Salem, NC for Cambridge, MA in two vehicles. The truck with our stuff, courtesy of Jungle Aviation Relocation Services, was already on its way. Our plan was to take two days, stopping to stay with friends in the DC area for one night.
Our church has a lot to celebrate this year! Take a few minutes to read our 2016 ministry report, and find out the many exciting ways God is at work in neighborhoods and congregations around our city!
This year, Christmas Day falls on a Sunday. Especially for those of us with small children, the excitement of waking up early, exchanging gifts, eating a special breakfast, and playing with new toys until mid-afternoon seems like the whole point of the day. Whether you'll be traveling or staying home in Boston, I'd like to suggest a few advantages to making worship a priority on Christmas Day.
Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) at Harvard University has been deeply involved with CTK from the beginning. One of our former campus ministers, Bradley Barnes, now serves CTK as the pastor in Newton. In Cambridge, we always have many Harvard undergraduate and graduate students involved in the church.
Like most of you, I awoke this morning to a flood of texts and social media posts about the results from last night's election. They ranged from extreme excitement to deep distress. Several people have already spoken to me about their genuine fear for their families, while others have written to tell me we are at the dawn of a new era of prosperity.
In the last edition of CTK Stories, I shared how Chad Baldanza, assistant pastor at CTK Jamaica Plain/Roxbury, and I enjoyed the unexpected opportunity to discuss the idea that humanity is made in the image of God with geneticists and biotech industry executives at Harvard Medical School. Incredibly, the story doesn’t end there: it continues, with God graciously providing us with opportunities to listen, as well as to speak.
On a morning early in September, with the heat index heading for 109°, an unlikely collection of geneticists, pastors, and artists gathered in the basement of the historic Enon Baptist Church in Baltimore, Maryland. As the church’s weekly clothing closet served members of the community in the next room, the gathering discussed how recent advances in genetic technology could benefit the victims of sickle cell disease, a genetic mutation that disproportionately affects African Americans.