Means of grace

Bishop David Bard asserts that during this time of the ongoing pandemic, “Such a moment asks that we think more deeply about the means of grace.” He shares about online communion … Grace. Paul, in Ephesians, writes, “for by grace you have been saved through faith.” While not all Christian theologians center the idea of… Continue Reading Means of grace

Ash Wednesday is so contemporary

“We are both dust and stardust.” Bishop David Bard cites coronavirus and stresses in The United Methodist Church as examples of why we mortals need an observance like Ash Wednesday … We have arrived once again at the season of Lent, the 40 days, not including Sundays (each Sunday is meant to be a “little… Continue Reading Ash Wednesday is so contemporary

Interesting times

Interesting times call for out of the ordinary actions. Bishop David Bard recalls a conference speaker’s words about a “liminal season,” as he explains the reasons for a special annual conference session … In a speech given in South Africa in 1966, Senator Robert Kennedy noted that there was a Chinese curse, “May you live… Continue Reading Interesting times

New year, new tasks

In his first Joyful Journey blog of 2020, Bishop David Bard talks about important tasks before The Michigan Conference of The UMC: ministry work, soul work, and grief work … Perhaps some of you are familiar with the beautiful words of Howard Thurman’s, “The Work of Christmas.” When the song of the angels is stilled,… Continue Reading New year, new tasks

Light and life

Remembering lyrics of Charles Wesley and Bruce Springsteen, Bishop David Bard, reflects on the nature of darkness and light. Looking ahead, he forecasts “The new year will not be dull.” … I am thinking of the verse from Isaiah often read on Christmas Eve: “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light;… Continue Reading Light and life

A song for a crazy world

Admitting that the times we live in can be terrifying, Bishop David Bard turns to a song and a poem to wish The Michigan Area a blessed Thanksgiving…

The Joyful Journey continues

Bishop David Bard brings some aspirational actions taken by the 2019 Michigan Annual Conference into clearer focus, as the journey toward the 2020 UMC General Conference continues to move forward … Emails and letters I’ve received in recent weeks, along with observations made to me by district superintendents, lead me to think that some of… Continue Reading The Joyful Journey continues

Surf’s up

Reflecting on scripture and a classic rock song, Bishop David Bard invites everyone into God’s creative work in the world and in the church …

Seeing differently

Bishop David Bard asks God to give everyone new eyes; eyes for seeing beyond racism to respond to parents and their children at the U.S.-Mexico border in a new light … The wedding service had ended. Pictures had been taken, including a few along the shores of Lake Superior on a beautiful day. Our daughter… Continue Reading Seeing differently

Life flows on

In this month’s, Joyful Journey blog, Bishop David Bard suggests that the “ordinary time” of summer is an opportunity to remember that life and ministry go on … On June 6, United Methodist theologian, Schubert Ogden died. He was 91. Ogden taught for many years at Southern Methodist University (SMU) where he was also a… Continue Reading Life flows on