From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
NEW BOOK ROYALTIES WILL ASSIST OKLAHOMA CITY
05 May 1996 13:05:01
95184 NEW BOOK ROYALTIES WILL ASSIST OKLAHOMA CITY
by Alexa Smith
LOUISVILLE, Ky.--When Presbyterian pastor Pat Kennedy preached to his
Oklahoma City congregation just days after the April 19 bomb blast, he
"So often in our lives the question 'Why?' doesn't get answered. ...
The real question for us is not 'Why?' but 'How?' Now that this has
happened, how will we face it? How may we find the strength to face our
pain and grief and go on affirming life and the God who gives us that life?
God does not protect us from pain or from life's tragic shocks. Rather God
meets us in the midst of it ... with love that dies on a cross and then
rises to meet us again.
"And only in that faith and hope can we keep going," said Kennedy.
"That's why we've come here today to share our faith and our hope even in
the midst of our tears and our unanswered questions."
That sermon -- and 17 other sermons and addresses delivered in
Oklahoma City's diverse faith communities in the wake of the tragedy --
will be available in a collection to be published July 15 by Chalice Press
in St. Louis.
Royalties from the $15 paperback, "And the Angels Wept: From the
Pulpits of Oklahoma City After the Bombing," will go to the Interfaith
Disaster Recovery of Greater Oklahoma City.
Editor David Polk said the sermons reflect the "healing work" of the
community of Oklahoma City itself and the book's perspectives will assist
the ongoing healing in that city and pastors facing criseses elsewhere.
Sermons are included from Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Baha'i
communities, including a children's sermon delivered to new confirmands by
a Roman Catholic priest. Other contributors are President Bill Clinton,
the Rev. Billy Graham and Oklahoma governor Frank Keating.
The Rev. Marsha Brock Bishop, associate regional minister of the
Christian Church in Oklahoma and co-editor of the book, says the sermons
explore the "sense of God's presence in the midst of suffering," drawing on
both Good Friday and Easter imagery.
In the words of the Rev. C. Lawrence Bishop of Edmond Trinity
Christian Church in Edmond, Okla.:
"To say this [the bombing] is not God's plan does not say for a minute
that God does not have a plan. But this isn't it. Too often in human
experience, you and I take a look at something where God has managed to
create something good out of tragedy and we see that even out of the ashes
something wonderful has happened. And we say, 'Oh! God let that happen so
this could happen.'
"No! No! No! No! No!" Bishop wrote.
"God is a creative God. God does not destroy. God may come across
the destruction and enter into it with us, but God is always building,
always creating. The ability to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear does
not imply the seamstress created the sow's ear."
Polk said Chalice Press published a similar volume on crisis preaching
after the Los Angeles riots.
Chalice Press is the book publishing arm of the Christian Board of
Publication, a unit of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Orders
for the book may be placed by calling (800) 366-3383. Abingdon Press will
also distribute the book.
For more information contact Presbyterian News Service
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Louisville, KY 40202
phone 502-569-5504 fax 502-569-8073
E-mail PCUSA.NEWS@pcusa.org Web page: http://www.pcusa.org
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