Pastor Fritz Foltz

Paint Yourself Into the Nativity

Paint Yourself Into the Nativity

Shortly after we were married, Faith and I purchased a wonderful reproduction of Hugo van der Goes, “The Adoration of the Child Jesus.” It is a triptych done on three wooden panels about eight inches high which we have set on our mantles, tables, and desks. For 47 years, it has been at the center […]

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Lesson 2: Freedom in the Theology of the Cross

Lesson 2: Freedom in the Theology of the Cross

Freedom has become a big issue during the pandemic. Many politicians claim refusing to wear masks is your patriotic duty for it opposes authoritarian mandates. They call on their followers to choose to live as free people. Some water down their position  by rationalizing that the COVID virus is not as deadly as scientists maintain, but […]

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Lesson 49: What is Islam?

Lesson 49: What is Islam?

Before starting a new online course, let me offer few words about Islam. Lately people have been asking if there something about it that fosters the violence of its radical fundamentalists. I often ask the same thing about Christianity that I regard as a loving peace movement. It is easy to come up with scholarly […]

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Lesson 48: Electronic Conversations

Lesson 48: Electronic Conversations

Let me first summarize the responses to how the church can foster conversation and then make a few observations about religious use of electronic communication. Conversations with Myron lead me to speak a few words about Islam next week. Then we’ll begin a new course on “Salvation” in October. Anne welcomed a chance to discuss […]

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Lesson 47: Conversation in the Community

Lesson 47: Conversation in the Community

I hope you remembered we are trying to make a list of ways the church might foster creative conversation, I can not report on our progress until next week as I am on vacation. However, let me offer some of my experiences. The first that pops to mind are the High School and Young Adult […]

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Lesson 46: Conversation in the Community

Lesson 46: Conversation in the Community

Yesterday I worshiped at a Greek Orthodox Cathedral. I left elated having heard a fine sermon and participated in a beautiful liturgy. However, as the day progressed, I became more and more melancholy. When I reflected on why this was, my thoughts went back to the worship that I came to see as the epitome […]

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Lesson 45:  God’s Word is Spoken

Lesson 45: God’s Word is Spoken

Last week I suggested the Bible presents Christianity as an ongoing two- way conversation between God and his people. Lupe responded with an email that covered very well what I intended to say this week. I suggest you read her observations in the comment I added to last week’s post. She acknowledged the power of […]

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Lesson 44: Conversation as Discernment

Lesson 44: Conversation as Discernment

As Bob makes clear it is easier to make conversation around the meal a symbol than to implement it as an activity in any large gathering of the Church. However, I still think it deserves to be considered in our time. The Bible presents Christianity as an ongoing conversation between God and his people. God […]

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Lesson 43:  Conversation as Discernment

Lesson 43: Conversation as Discernment

My observation that Christian conversation and especially that which takes place around the communion table might be the most helpful way to discern God’s Word drew a number of responses. All of them expressed hope for this kind of creative conversation, but also disappointment that it is not happening. Myron observed, “Most of the “conversation” […]

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Lesson 42:  How Do We Determine God’s Word – Community 4

Lesson 42: How Do We Determine God’s Word – Community 4

When I began my ministry in the early 1960s everyone was talking about Eugene Carson Blake’s proposal for uniting the Church. He urged mainline Protestants to unify before they began trying to reconcile their theological differences. His point was once we obeyed the New Testament call for one Body in Christ, we would become family […]

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