We are living in turbulent times and the need for an effective witness on the part of the Christian Church in collaboration with other faith communities is greater now than ever before. The words spoken by the leaders from North Korea and the United States resemble two juveniles trying to prove who can destroy the other the greatest number of times. War benefits the rich and is a demonic force in the lives of the masses. It is the poor and the marginalized who suffer the most.
I am pleased that the Dean's Council at the I. T. C. is committed to taking our witness and ministry off the campus and into the Vine City Community. We seek to become doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves. It is a joy to be in a collegiate community with persons willing to risk leaving the comfort of the campus to venture into the unknown. We go with full confidence that God will make our way plain and that victory will be achieved.
Now, I must offer a word about the popularity of the nonsense over the sacredness of the flag. Is it a sign of disrespect to sit or kneel during the presentation of the flag and the singing of the National Anthem? The President of the United States has actually succeeded in taking the spotlight off his failure to pass promised legislation and turned his attention to the action of a professional football player. His rhetoric is causing a growing demonstration of resentment. As a Christian, the ultimate allegiance is not to the flag, but to Jesus Christ.
Finally, the Faith Community needs to be in prayer for President Donald Trump that God will deliver him from his self-centered ways to the end that America will truly be a Great Nation.
It is so encouraging to see the growth and development of young seminarians unfolding right before your very eyes. You are led to declare, what a mighty God we serve. Our students at Gammon Theological Seminary have a hunger for academic excellence, a spirit of collegiality, and a strong desire to be creatively and effectively involved in the ministry of the local church.
These are the men and women who have answered the Call of God for the ministry of word and sacrament. I am more encouraged by what I see in the lives of our current students and believe that the future of the church is bright. My prayer is that God will deliver them from any form of selfishness to the end that Jesus Christ will be glorified.
I am grateful for the opportunity to visit in congregations where our students are serving. My travels include a trip to Chattanooga, Montgomery, Marshall, TX (Wiley College), Augusta, GA (Paine College) and throughout North Georgia. We exist at Gammon for the benefit of the students. Without them there would be no reason for our doors to be open.
It is a great joy to be surrounded by students who hunger and thirst for the Living Word.
I seek the prayers and support from all persons of good will. Remember, together all things are possible. Amen.
We are encountering the reality of a hurting humanity. It is no fault of any of us, but the hurt exists in spite of us. Names ascribed to a male (Harvey) and a female (Irma) have connected to administer blows that knocked us down, but not out. Hand in Hand we will "Rise Up". All things are really possible when people of good will come together in the interest of the brothers and sisters who have been devastated by the two (2) hurricanes.
Our brothers and sisters out west are experiencing unusually high temperatures and raging wild fires. Too much water in some places and too little water in other places. Still, I am convinced that as a people of faith we shall overcome. Thanks be to God who gives us the victory.
Now, I want to express my deep and abiding gratitude to the students of Gammon Seminary for the tremendous support and love they provide in supporting me as their Dean. They are consistent in their commitment for academic excellence and in helping staff to be at our best.
We offer condolences to Clement Twumasi in the recent death of his grandfather in Ghana. Our Lord declared to be "the resurrection and the life". I believe Him and pray that you stand in agreement with me.
I was honored this week in having the opportunity to preach at the observance of Family and Friends Sunday at Columbia Drive UMC. It was a powerful worship experience in every way, from beginning to the end. Rev. Ralph Thompson is doing a great job as Servant Leader. The future of the congregation is very bright with new people joining almost every week.
Also, the invitation was extended to me to preach this week during the Chapel Service conducted by our Deans from each of the constituent denominations at the ITC. I suppose the new Dean receives the assignment.
Last week was most gratifying. I met with a couple who made a financial commitment to Gammon for one hundred dollars ($100) per month for sixty (60) months. What a commitment. Thanks be to God.
It is very encouraging to have a recent graduate from Paine College, with library experience, to help us with the Herculean task of bringing order to our archives. You will be proud of the work being done. Also, I am grateful for Dr. Walter McKelvey for helping to clear up some critical matters enabling us to move forward with clarity and integrity.
Remember that with God all things are possible.