Moving forward together

In this month’s Joyful Journey, Bishop David Bard turns our focus toward matters engaging the “heart and soul problems” in the nation and the church … I write this as I prepare for our annual conference gathering in Traverse City. I look forward to our being together for worship, learning, fellowship and business. I trust… Continue Reading Moving forward together

For all we know

Bishop David Bard says that love is the way forward regardless of what we know or don’t know about the future of The United Methodist Church … Here we are on the cusp of May. Time seems to move quickly during May. There are the final days of school and graduations. Those with summer homes… Continue Reading For all we know

One more, once!

Remembering Count Basie’s jazz tune, Bishop David Bard reflects on the unpredictable April weather and the eternal promise of Easter … April can be a strange month. My only canceled preaching engagement related to weather here in Michigan came on an April Sunday. The roads were icy that morning. Temperatures in April can dip well… Continue Reading One more, once!

Invitation to a holy Lent

“The invitation to a holy Lent is an invitation to deep inner work, ” says Bishop David Bard. He reflects on how grace surrounds acts of repentance and self-examination. … The church season of Lent, the 40 days, not including Sundays, of preparation for the celebration of the most significant day for Christian faith, Easter.… Continue Reading Invitation to a holy Lent

What’s love got to do with it?

Love asks us to be kind, uncomfortable, and grateful says Bishop David Bard in this month’s reflection on The Joyful Journey … February. For the briefest month of the year, there are a whole lot of celebrations and commemorations. February is Black History Month. Significant. So, too, LGBT History Month. It is also The Great… Continue Reading What’s love got to do with it?

Walking in rhythm in 2022

Though 2022 is not starting as the “new new year we were hoping for,” Bishop David Bard encourages Michigan United Methodists to “keep moving” in the direction of God’s grace … Let’s face it, 2022 was not the new new year we were hoping for. The sermon I prepared for the Minnesota Conference for January… Continue Reading Walking in rhythm in 2022

Always now and not yet

Bishop David Bard reminds us that Christmas light, grace, hope, joy, peace, and love will soon arrive into the world and break through all that might get in the way. … As November moves toward December, I planned to write an essay filled with Christmas music and good cheer, an essay evoking the sights, sounds,… Continue Reading Always now and not yet

God’s grace is ‘a second wind’

Bishop David Bard reflects on Paul’s words to the Thessalonians, “Rejoice always.” He notes, “much of the time, that’s much harder than we think.” … BISHOP DAVID BARD Michigan Area United Methodist Church November arrives so quickly. ZOOM is not only an online meeting platform, it is our experience of time in September and October.… Continue Reading God’s grace is ‘a second wind’

The many masks we wear

We put masks on. We take masks off. Both actions are important says Bishops David Bard as he considers the pandemic, division in The United Methodist Church, and uncovering events in our history … October. Cool breezes and brightly colored leaves. High School football on Friday nights and college football on Saturdays. Perhaps our first… Continue Reading The many masks we wear

Were you made for times like this?

Bishop David Bard reflects on this season of life and ministry and says nuanced thinking and tragic optimism are needed during a time of grief, trauma, and challenge … It has been a hot summer. According to weather data, July 2021 is the hottest July on record. Michigan has often been hot and humid, but… Continue Reading Were you made for times like this?