View this email in your browser
Sharing God's unconditional love and promise in Jesus Christ with all people. Becoming known as a progressive, inclusive community of faith. 
Practice Group
The Universal Christ by Richard Rohr
Wednesdays starting February 5
noon & 6:00pm (choose one)
St. Paul Lounge/Fellowship Hall

Explore what it means that Jesus was called “Christ” and how this forgotten truth can transform everything we see, hope for, and believe. And practice with other beginners an ancient form of prayer called “contemplation.”

Two parallel 8-session practice groups will read and pray their way through Richard Rohr’s The Universal Christ. Hosted by Pastor Clark, Mitch Haack and Sandy Wiper, they will meet weekly on Wednesdays at St. Paul—one group at noon and the other at 6:00pm. Beginners and imperfect-attenders welcome.

Visit for more information and to sign up. 

Discuss, Pray, and Belong: Wednesdays
Feb 5 Beforehand, read chapters 1 and 2.
Feb 12 Beforehand read chapters 3 and 4.
Feb 19 Beforehand, read chapters 5, 6 and 7.
Feb 26 No class. Ash Wednesday meal 5:45p & worship 7:15pm
Mar 4 Beforehand, read chapters 8, 9 and 10.
Mar 11 Beforehand, read chapters 11 and 12.
Mar 18 Beforehand, read chapters 13, 14 and 15.
Mar 25 Beforehand, read chapters 16, 17 and Afterward.
Apr 1 Before this session, read the Appendixes.
Lent Evening Prayer services will follow the 6pm sessions in March & April  
Sign Up For the Practice Group By Clicking Here
Contemplative prayer is the day-to-day, practical application of all of the above. It’s a way to give yourself to God, let God open the “eyes” of your heart, so you even more begin to “see” the universal Christ and his life, death, resurrection in all things and all people.

Ten years ago, I was a pastor in New Jersey when I first formally studied contemplation. I found I’d been praying “contemplatively” for a long time. The Holy Spirit had been teaching me contemplative prayer all along, through various people and churches and also through my own intuition and the Spirit’s inner urgings.

So, this is not some elite activity, accessible only to childless monks and nuns cloistered and isolated from the real world. Like the very body and blood of Christ, it is for you.

There are many contemplative ways to pray. At its heart is silence and stillness, whether you’re listening to your breath, prayer-journaling, or meditating with scripture.

I’m excited to practice it with you in February and March, as we read together Richard Rohr’s The Universal Christ. Likely you’ll find you’ve also been praying this way without knowing it.

I hope all of us will find God opening the eyes of our heart even wider to behold this beloved and Christ-soaked world.
Faith Question For The Week

“Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed… Blessed…” taught Jesus.

This is Jesus’ first teaching in the Gospel of Matthew. Notice where Jesus starts. Here in the beginning, Jesus proclaims nine blessings. 

Jesus’ first teaching echoes some of God’s first words on the first pages of the Bible in Genesis, “And God saw that it was good.” Six times God sees the goodness of creation in progress. Finally, just before God rested, “God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good.” 

You might say the Christian faith starts with seven times goodness and nine times blessing. But where do Christians so often start? Sin, shame, exclusion, death. These are not to be denied, but neither are they to be promoted ahead of what is truly first: goodness and blessing, inclusion and life.

In fact, in this very first teaching, Jesus includes sin, shame, exclusion, and death, embracing people experiencing them in blessing!

Before this first teaching, Jesus proclaimed, “Change your life, because the kingdom of heaven has come near.” What might change about your approach to life, faith, God, and other people as you put these Nine Blessings ahead of, say, the Ten Commandments? What light do these blessings shed on your life--where you’ve come from and where you’re going?

Ask Jesus to lead you back to the beginning.

To dive deeper into this theme of “Original Blessing” (over “Original Sin”) consider joining one of The Universal Christ practice groups starting Wed, Feb 5. For more info and to sign up, visit or call the church office.

Reminder, News, Events
Stay Connected
This weeks events at
St. Paul

Sunday, February 2
Worship 9:15 am

Tuesday, February 4
Men's Breakfast Jenny's Diner 8:30 
Service Committee 2:00 pm
WELCA Board 3:00 pm
Worship 4:30 pm

Wednesday, February 5
Universal Christ Practice Group 12:00
Hope in Action 4:00 pm
CCC Choir 4:15 pm
Learning Committee 5:15 pm
Tintinnabulum 5:15 pm
Vocal Choir 5:15 pm
Confirmation at Zion 5:45 pm
Universal Christ Practice Group 6:00 pm
Adult Bells 6:15 pm

Sunday, February 9
Worship 9:15 am

February Epistle Click Here
Click here for January 26, 2020 Worship
This Weeks Readings


St. Paul's Facebook
St. Paul's Website
Thank You
Copyright © 2020| Saint Paul Lutheran Church, All rights reserved.
Weekly Newsletter

Our mailing address is:
713 S Third Street, Clinton, IA 52732
Church Office Hours are Monday-Thursday 8-1

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can 
update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
St. Paul Lutheran Chuch · 715 S 3rd St · Clinton, IA 52732-4312 · USA

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp