Rev. James Moore, OblSB

impermanent pine-hood

1 pine

 “The present form of this world is passing away.”  (1 Corinthians 7:31)


“Dust in the wind / All we are is dust in the wind.”  (Kansas)


Brad Cole, our resident artist at the PERC (and raker of pine needles), was the mind behind the Celtic cross splayed on the parking lot.


Where some might have simply cleared the pine needles over into the lawn, genius struck!


Of this creation from last Thursday, he acknowledged that it would be short-lived.


Banu and I expressed our assent.

2 pine  

By Friday afternoon, the wind had begun to assert the inevitable.


I was reminded of the Tibetan monks who produce elaborate images in sand.


They are filled with almost every color imaginable (and maybe some beyond imagining).

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Afterward, the images are subjected to a ritual sweeping, a ritual destruction—displaying the ephemeral nature of all we see.


We await “the time of universal restoration.”  (Acts 3:21)


Rev. James Moore, OblSB, Moderator of Session


labor on

In worship yesterday, I noted a holiday that is not on the church calendar, which is Labor Day. Having said that, it is entirely appropriate to thank God for the good gift of work.

We give thanks for work that edifies the human spirit and does not crush it.
We give thanks for work that builds the earth and does not destroy it.
We give thanks for work that leads us to praise and does not become a curse.


Today I was reminded of how appropriate the Monday morning prayer is for Labor Day. This comes from the Presbyterian Book of Common Worship:

We praise you, God our creator, for your handiwork in shaping and sustaining your wondrous creation. Especially we thank you for the miracle of life and the wonder of living…
particular blessings coming to us in this day…
the resources of the earth…
gifts of creative vision and skillful craft…
the treasure stored in every human life…

We dare to pray for others, God our Savior, claiming your love in Jesus Christ for the whole world, committing ourselves to care for those around us in his name. Especially we pray for
those who work for the benefit of others…
those who cannot work today…
those who teach and those who learn…
people who are poor…
the church in Europe…

I especially like the themes of giving thanks for “gifts of creative vision and skillful craft” and “the treasure stored in every human life.” How dramatically different we would be if we truly took that to heart.

And then there are prayers for “those who work for the benefit of others,” and “those who cannot work today.”

Indeed, the entire prayer is shot through with giving glory to God for the ability to serve creation, to serve the part of creation that is us, and to serve the Lord.

(The photo is posted with a nod to my wife's excellent work in the kitchen!)

And a special thanks to all who have labored for the PERC!

Rev. James Moore, Moderator of Session


if these walls could talk (or make other sounds)

Another transmission from the PERC.  Actually, I am reminded of a comment one of the session members at First Presbyterian in Auburn made.  (For those who don’t know, the “session” is Presbyterian-speak for the board of elders.)  Early this summer, someone spoke of how things would soon be “percolating at the PERC.”  I’m not sure if she meant that as a pun—but it works!

Now, back to talking walls.

1 walls

I’m sure some jubilant sounds have been uttered within the walls of the dining room.  Is it possible there’s also been dysfunctional table talk from time to time?  Who can say?  Still, there is a welcoming atmosphere (and aroma) to be found.

2 walls

How about some pool or foosball?  The game room has heard cries of the thrill of victory and cries of the agony of defeat.  I’m sure everyone has been a good sport about the outcomes.

3 walls

The acoustics of the ballroom lend themselves well to the celebration of dance, voices raised high in songs of praise, and overlapping waves of excited discussion.  And then acoustics take a back seat when silence is observed.

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Silence reigns in the prayer room, the chapel.  The walls do not talk about that.  Still in the foreground of the photo, part of the organ can be seen.  So let’s not forget that silence can be carried in music.

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Speaking of silence, we visit the library.  Shhh!  And one more note on silence: behold the secret door between the fireplace and a bookcase.  To where does it lead?  Ask the walls; I’m sure they have the answer.

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Moving into the main living room, the Jacob Doll piano has no doubt been a source of delight for decades.  Of course, much depends on the skill of the person sitting on the bench.  Applause and tears of joy have sounded in harmony with the melodies.

There are other walls here.  Maybe we can visit them and strain to hear what they say.

Rev. James Moore, OblSB, Moderator of Session