"World of Trouble, World of Wonder"
"I am very excited to share with you all the preaching theme for this year--World of Wonder. This theme will also be helping to guide the renewal of our religious education program for children. However, as the summer progressed, and it seemed more and more like the world was wallowing in pain and war and misery (this summer really has had it all!), I decided that a purely positive, uplifting sermon might miss the mark, leaving us feeling, "Hey, Stephen--this world you are talking about is more than roses and rainbows...it's tough out there." Indeed it is, and so I changed the title to better reflect the truth of our life situation. It is, as Louis Armstrong sang, "a Wonderful World," but it comes to us in as a tumbled up, chaos filled, package--and we gather in church to navigate that world, not just to praise it. All year, we will be looking at the inner dynamics of the emotion of wonder, the instinct that can save us."