My family and I are filled with joy, excitement and gratitude to be back from my summer Sabbatical. We had a tremendous time together and were refreshed and restored at many levels.   Over time on various occasions I will share some things we learned while away and some ways in which God opened up my eyes to new understandings.

I offer unbounded thanks to the congregation, the board, and our astonishing staff not only for making this time possible, but for carrying on in a manner which has led to new growth, faithfulness, and a continuing passion for Christ.

Nothing thrills a pastor more than a congregation and staff that does not stand still, but continues to move forward in love for God and for each other in his or her absence. I am overjoyed by what has been happening at the Chapel this summer. Thank you and thanks be to God!!!

I remain crystal clear that the reason the Chapel exists and the purpose behind all we do is found in Matthew 22. Here Jesus states that our Christian story, all of scripture and God’s commands is fulfilled when we love God and love people. It is the most astonishingly challenging standard to which we are called to pursue individually, and collectively as a community of faith.

I love these adapted words from Bishop Curry. “The opposite of love is not hate: it is sin. Sin is when I put me at the center instead of God and love is the antidote to sin. If I love God with all of me, there is little room left for selfishness. When my life is focused on loving God and others, there is not much room for sin. When I make my life about love, I get to know God because God is love.”

And the good news is that when we fall short of love, God’s response is the cross reminding us that God’s love and forgiveness never ends.

I look forward to this coming Fall season. Please know how grateful I am and thrilled to be serving Jesus here in Snowmass Village and beyond.