Category: Essays

New Beginnings

And now a message from our pastor, the Rev. Dr. Charlie Close

The past year has been a year of expectation, gestation, investigation, conversation, and ultimately transition. And in a very real way, the same has been true for Canaan Congregational Church. We found each other; covenanted with each other; and decided to walk with each other into new chapters of our respective lives. This has been a time filled with new friendships and new relationships. Every time I spend time with you I feel blessed. Every time I head home from leading worship or attending a meeting, I feel content and happy.

. . . .

We have only just begun our journey together. I pray that everyone feels as blessed as I do. May God continue to bless us as we all do a new thing, and may we all continue to grow into the “beloved community.”

“I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” – Isaiah 43.19

Stewards of the Earth

“[The] care of the earth is our most ancient and most worthy and, after all, our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it, and to foster its renewal, is our only legitimate hope.” ―Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

The words economics and stewardship are both derived from the same Greek word oikonomia (oiko means house and nomos means management of). That is, we are managers of the “household of earth.” The Christian steward understands that all of us are economists in the sense that we are all managers of the household of earth. “When a man becomes a Christian, he becomes industrious, trustworthy and prosperous. Now, if that man when he gets all he can and saves all he can, does not give all he can, I have more hope for Judas Iscariot than for that man!” (John Wesley, circa 1760).

Christians realize that we cannot live in greed and carelessness over the consumption of food, energy, and other resources without adversely affecting our neighbor and the other creatures. Because of the ecological and economic interconnectedness that exists around the world, the demands of one person’s lifestyle can impact the lives of many others.


“The master of the garden is the one who waters it, trims the branches, plants the seeds, and pulls the weeds. If you merely stroll through the garden, you are but an acolyte.” ― Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration