A Message from Pastor Kaji

February 22nd,2024 Categories: Weekly Letter

Sunday February 25

Click here for Pastor Kaji’s 1st Sunday of Lent sermon

Dear Church:

Typically, when I write this newsletter piece, I give you a short introduction to the text. This week however, I want to offer a little bit more by way of textual analysis for you as you prepare for worship on Sunday. It’s because our text this week, from Proverbs, which was proscribed by the lectionary, might be a tad confusing.

To try to simplify this, I would say that the teacher in Proverbs is really offering a lesson on three themes. The first has to do with faith in God. The second is about misplaced priorities. And the third is about how A and B interact as we are in relationship with each other. Structurally, A opens and closes this pericope (passage). The rest of the verses put B and C in conversation with each other. (My more detailed structural analysis of the pericope is below.)

With this in mind, I encourage you to give prayerful consideration to this text, and to conjure examples you have witnessed in your own life of all three points. Of course I will offer the same. 

Meanwhile, I encourage you to save the dates for our upcoming congregational conversation (March 10, 1 pm) and congregational vote (March 17, 1 pm) in the weeks preceding Holy Week. Church leadership has been doing a beautiful job honing in on a strategic plan for the next few years, and there is room for all of us to contribute to the bold ministry the church is proposing for its future. I hope that you will join us in conversation about this because we can’t do it without you. 

I can’t wait to see you! 

Pax Christi,
Pastor Kaji

Proverbs 28:20–25 (Year B, p. 79):

20 A: A person who is faithful [has] abundant blessings, 
B: while one who is in a hurry to be rich will not go unpunished. 
21 C: The one who shows favoritism is no good — 
B: over a piece of bread will a woman or man do wrong. 
22 B: A person with a covetous eye hastens toward riches and does not know want is on the way. 
23 C: The woman or man who rebukes another person will find favor afterward, more than one who flatters with the tongue. 
24 B: Anyone who robs mother or father and says, “That is no transgression,” 
C: is a companion to a vandal. 
25 B: A greedy person stirs up strife, 
A: while a woman or man who trusts in the GOD WHO PROVIDES will be well provisioned.

Gafney, Wilda C.. A Women’s Lectionary for the Whole Church Year B (p. 79). Church Publishing Incorporated. Kindle Edition. (Pastor Kaji’s annotations.)