Greensky Hill Indian United Methodist Church wants all of our neighbors to know
- especially our LGBTQ2S+ members, family, & friends -
that we see all the people and we welcome all as beloved children of God. All.
Let's face feelings of hopelessness and confusion with a story of hope and provision from Exodus 16. Sometimes, life is right in front of us, but we don’t recognize it. Sometimes, everything we long for, everything we need is right there, but... “Better the enslavement that I know, than the freedom that I don’t know.” - Rolf Jacobson, Fleshpots of Egypt
Our sacred text for this Sunday is a real stretch. Literally. "Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea..." (Exodus 14:21 & 27). As we wrestle with violence in the Bible and all around us, we're thinking especially about those who cry out to their mothers in their moments of crisis. Those who needed to be set free were not Pharaoh's only victims.
"Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law." - Romans 13:10
Sunday, Sep. 6, at 10 AM, we're starting our September online worship series, "Through the Wilderness," with, "Praises & Swords," a message about real love in a really violent world.
Let's walk together apart "Through the Wilderness." Together apart means loving our neighbors as ourselves by practicing physical distancing for now and social connecting always.
Let's talk about genuine love and what it means to "hold fast to what is good." And we'll ponder this riddle, "For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it." A Mister Rogers song will help us hold fast and know, "Then Your Heart is Full of Love," as we listen to another story from Matthew 16 and a letter to a community trying to resist a false empire in order to live in God's kin-dom instead.
What do rocks have to do with being truly, fully, human? The same metaphor - rock - can be a life giving foundation upon which to build or an impenetrable fortress that keeps us from risking being seen as we are. Foundation or fortress? Has COVID-19 intensified self-protective feelings in you (like a 1966 Simon and Garfunkel song)? Everyday, we can deconstruct the colonized version of who Jesus is, look to the rock from which we were hewn, and answer with our lives, "Who do you say that I am?"
We want Greensky Hill to be a safe place for all of us - ALL - to take “the greatest risk we’ll ever take.” That’s why we ask the hard questions and embrace the Mystery when we don’t have good answers. A 2016 Jordan Smith song will help get us there. In these days when political opponents call each other "sheeple" and BIPOC are disproportionately harmed by the pandemic and by institutional racism, it's more important than ever that we see each other as fully human.
At first glance, a phrase like, "The word is near you," could seem like some churchy, religious, phrase disconnected from our everyday experience. It's not. It's true that it's a quote from the Bible, but listen to how connected it is to our everyday reality - especially our weird pandemic reality. In the New Testament book of Romans, "The word is near you," is a quote from the book of Deuteronomy. We know how to walk the good road. It's not too hard. It's not too far away. Let that sink in.
We are not powerless in the face of "the spiritual forces of racism, sexism, violence, and Plantation Capitalism" that James Lawson spoke about at John Lewis' funeral. We can do something. And when asked, "Why?", we can simply answer, "Because God." We'll share a Love Feast, pray together (including a Prayer for Anti-Racism), sing together, listen to a story from Matthew 14:13-21, and feel compassion in the 1969 Elvis Presley song, "In the Ghetto."
We remain a sanctuary of love in a setting of natural beauty.
We preserve a unique Native Heritage.
We invite people to experience community as sisters and brothers in Christ and empower people to serve all in need.
Our simple log church was built in the 1840's. Surrounded by trees marking the site of a long sacred meeting place, the church was constructed with large hewn logs notched at the corners and laid horizontally over a stone foundation. Much of the lumber used in the building was brought by canoe from Traverse City. Today the church continues to be an active, racially mixed congregation, some of whom are descendants of original worshipers.
When not practicing social distancing, we serve a free hot breakfast every Sunday at 9 a.m. and if you need extra food, we'll send you home with more. No strings attached! All are welcome at our free meals. If you're interested in worship or other church activities, you are more than welcome; however, you should never feel obligated. We also care for our community with United Methodist Women and Men's Club meetings, Grandmother Moon ceremonies, Bible Studies, children's ministry, water protector events, and other activities.
Wherever you are on your spiritual journey, you'll feel welcome at Greensky Hill Indian United Methodist Church, where it's safe to ask the hard questions. We will leave no heart behind.
08484 Greensky Hill Rd, Charlevoix, Michigan 49720, United States
Rev. Jonathan David Mays, Pastor, (231) 459-8067