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Talitha’s Take

A weblog by Rev. Talitha G Phillips, Associate Pastor and Coordinator for Children, Youth, and Family Life

What’s your theodicy?

Dear friends, I’ve been out of the office with a cold and am just getting back into the swing of things, so today’s contact piece is brief. However, it is heavy on my heart to say something about the massive storms, earthquakes, and fires that have been devastating communities in our country and around the world. Natural disasters are faith-challenging experiences. A…

Are you a minister?

Dear friends, When I send reminders to our nursery volunteers or Godly Play teachers, I usually include a little sentence like “thank you for your ministry with our young ones.” We believe that Godly Play is as important as Celebration – that it is just another form of worshiping God – and though the nursery may fly under the radar it is…

Mission trip and mission month

Dear friends, I’m in LA with the youth group (pray for us!) on a mission trip. It’s been a busy 2 weeks with 2 trips in a row. Check out our evolving photo album from Tahoe on Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/61582869@N04/albums/72157682606847883 I want to make sure everyone knows about an upcoming theme for the month of August. We will be focusing on local mission…

Kitten Theology

Big news in the family (actually, tiny news): we’ve got kittens! Itsy-bitsy little babies, and five of them. The two bigger ones, about six weeks old, are at the Aho house right now, learning how to climb couches and destroy shoelaces. Michael and I are fostering them now, with about a 90% chance we’ll adopt them too. The three littlest ones are…

The dilemma of an unexpected great gift

Dear friends, Have you ever been given such a great gift that you hardly knew what to do with it? This week in Celebration, Kristin talked about the gift of a (literal) bucket full of food when she was hungry, and during the weeks to come you will be hearing more stories from church members as part of our stewardship season. Here’s…

Come Walk With Me

Dear friends, Thank you for your patience as I catch up with myself! I’ve been gone for two weeks and I feel a little bit like one of those kid toys where the body tips over and the round bottom part rolls to catch up and keep balance. My legs (and email responses) are catching up with my brain as I return.…

Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story?

When I briefly mentioned Hamilton in my sermon I got a lot of comments on that, and I’m glad that so many of you are able to see it while it’s here in SF! As Ben frequently recommends books for your reading pleasure, I’m going to recommend an album to listen to: the Hamilton Mixtape. It could be seen mainly as a…

Simultaneous Easters

I saw my first Easter decorations yesterday and I flinched. Now, how I could have held out this long I don’t quite know — the Easter Peeps have been out in the grocery stores since Ash Wednesday or before — but I must have had some blinders on in the candy aisle. Eleven days out from the holiday itself, I suppose I…

Spring gardening – don’t forget the compost!

Dear Friends, Spring is here! Those of us who enjoy gardening are eagerly getting seeds in the ground, setting up watering systems for the drier days to come, and planning future harvests. Some expert-level gardeners I know are already gathering in their spring crops and bragging about their peas and artichokes on Facebook (show-offs! ;-). And with less enjoyment, but surely plenty…

Youth Group Retreat at Tahoe

Dear Friends, With a huge thanks to our awesome adult advisors, I’m pleased to announce that the youth group had a WONDERFUL retreat at Tahoe this weekend! As I continue to unpack, decompress, and write up my learnings and reminders for next time, my Contact piece will be shorter this week, but here are the highlights. – Despite many misgivings and fears,…