by Bil Aulenbach

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Silence Is Not the Answer

My wife and I met George and Vivian Johnson at Irvine United Congregational Church ten years ago. George was a retired progressive Lutheran pastor who had an exciting, challenging ministry but wanted to continue sharing his gifts with our church family.

About four years ago, George began to suffer liver problems, diminished eyesight and hearing, and some memory loss, but he still wanted to share his gifts with the world.… Read more >

Peter the Pebble

The apostle born as Simeon or Simon was later in life called Cephas or Peter, both of which mean “rock.”

To me, Peter is an enigma. Most of the time, I see him as weak, dense, unfaithful, and confused, more of a pebble than a rock.

Most believe Peter was one of Jesus’s closest confidants and a great leader in the early church.… Read more >

Let’s Take Another Look

One of Jesus’s best-known parables is the parable of the talents, found in Matthew 25:14-30. The story is about a wealthy man who goes on a journey and loans three of his slaves some talents (one of which was worth more than a laborer’s salary for fifteen years). The first slave receives five talents, the second receives two, and the third receives one.… Read more >