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Chi Rho Connection, Vol. VIII, No. 11

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    CHI RHO CONNECTION The eNewsletter of Chi Rho Press, Your LGBT Christian Publishing House Vol. VIII, No. 11 30 October 2007 ************************* Contents:
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 30, 2007

      The eNewsletter of Chi Rho Press,
      Your LGBT Christian Publishing House
      Vol. VIII, No. 11
      30 October 2007



      1. New 2008 Liturgical Calendar
      2. Please Become A Guardian Angel
      3. "Sweet Rivers of Mercy"
      4. May We Suggest "Steps to Recovery from Bible
      5. "Christian with a Twist"
      6. Adam's Last Word


      This issue's Quotes:

      "Idolatry is committed not merely by setting up false
      gods, but also by setting up false devils."
      G. K. Chesterton

      "Beware lest we mistake our prejudices for our
      Harry A. Ironside


      Welcome once again to the Chi Rho Connection, the
      electronic newsletter of Chi Rho Press. Thank you
      for passing this Chi Rho Connection on to others.

      To join our list, send an e-mail message to

      To remove yourself from this list send an e-mail to

      Please visit our Web site at http://www.chirhopress.com
      to see our entire lines of books, handouts, videos,
      tapes, tchochkas, and stained glass.

      Direct all other e-mail to Adam@....


      1. New 2008 Liturgical Calendar!

      The new Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary is out!
      The new Church Year starts with the first Sunday in
      Advent, December 2, 2007. Chi Rho Press’ annual
      Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary for 2007-2008 is
      back from the printer and ready to ship.

      The NEW 2007-2008 Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary
      Year A is now on the Chi Rho Press Web site. You may
      view it and order it at this link:

      The 2007-2008 Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary sells
      for $11.95 each, $9.50 each for six or more copies, plus
      shipping and handling.

      The Lectionary in the Liturgical Calendar is from the
      Revised Common Lectionary, widely used as the
      ecumenical consensus on readings for each Sunday and
      holy day in the three-year cycle of the church year.
      Our Liturgical Calendar is packed with useful
      information for planning worship and preaching in
      the local church. It is intended for use by pastors,
      musicians, altar guilds, teachers, theological students,
      and anyone using the Church Year as a basis for worship
      or education. The Liturgical Calendar is spiral bound
      so it can lie flat for easy use, in the popular 8 ½" x
      11" format.

      Featured in this new Liturgical Calendar are these
      sections: A Heading that identifies the day in the
      church year (for example, the first Sunday of Advent)
      with alternative descriptions where appropriate.
      The Revised Common Lectionary readings, including
      a brief summary of each reading. (These are intended
      as only a very brief overview to identify general
      themes as an aid to worship planning. We do not
      represent them as anything approaching a thorough

      The First Reading is usually from the Hebrew Testament,
      but there are exceptions, such as the use of readings
      from Acts during the Easter season. These are sometimes
      selected thematically to fit the Liturgical Calendar,
      but often are simply being read through key passages
      over a series of weeks. This is followed by a Response,
      usually a Psalm. The Epistle Reading is next, like the
      Hebrew Testament Reading typically a series of key
      passages from the same book being read over a number
      of weeks. Finally the Gospel Reading follows the story
      of Jesus through the Christmas and Easter cycles, plus
      the teachings of Jesus the rest of the year.

      Next is a section called "Worship Planning." This
      includes suggestions for decorations or symbols for
      special seasons, such as Advent wreaths; the
      liturgical color for the day; etc.

      Rev. Witt has added lots of Notes in the Worship
      Planning section, which serve to explain in more
      detail information about the time of the church
      year, provide resources for further study and
      information, and develop liturgical themes to make
      your worship experience more rich and meaningful.

      Then comes a section called "Special Events," which
      includes any special events occurring that day or that
      week that you may wish to commemorate, such as World
      AIDS Day, and some special occasions for celebrations
      of diversity, such as celebration days for specific
      cultures (e.g., Cinco de Mayo) and special days for
      the GLBT community (e.g., a day of remembrance for
      Matthew Shepard).

      As a special added section, we have included
      alternative readings for the five Sundays of
      Pride-Tide (June) prepared by the Rev. Gordon
      McCoy. The five sets of readings for Pride-Tide
      may be used at any time in the year that the faith
      community celebrates LGBT Pride. The standard
      Revised Common Lectionary readings are included
      for the five Sundays in June as well.

      The 2007-2008 Liturgical Calendar will be a helpful
      aid for anyone involved in planning worship, as well
      as a useful resource for all who want to know more
      about the Church year and the rich liturgical life
      of the Church Universal. We think you will like
      this Liturgical Calendar.

      Order the 2008 Calendar today at this new link:

      The 2008 Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary sells for
      $11.95 each, $9.50 each for six or more copies, plus
      shipping and handling.


      2. Please Become A Guardian Angel

      Chi Rho Press has a Guardian Angels program and we
      would love for you to become a member. We are looking
      for individuals, couples, or families who will become
      sponsors of the Press and more involved as partners
      in this ministry.

      Our vision of ecumenical, grass roots ministry really
      takes hold with the implementation of the Guardian Angel
      Individual Sponsor Program. Won't you become a part of
      this ministry? We are inviting you to become a Guardian
      Angel of Chi Rho Press today!

      Guardian Angels will

      1. Receive a welcome gift of your choice of one of the
      products on our Web site as a thank you for your support.

      2. Be listed as a Guardian Angel Sponsor in Chi Rho Press
      publications, press releases, eNewsletters, and on the Web
      page, with your permission.

      3. Receive an annual report prepared just for Sponsors.

      4. Be informed first about advance sales of publications
      from Chi Rho Press.

      5. And of course, you will remain in our prayers!

      And what do we ask from our Guardian Angels in return?
      Only three things,

      1. Please keep the ministry of Chi Rho Press in your

      2. A gift of at least $150 a year to Chi Rho Press from
      individuals, couples, or families.

      3. Keep your friends, family, co-workers, and churches
      informed about the resources available from Chi Rho Press,
      our Web site, and our eNewsletter, this Chi Rho Connection
      and the weekly Chi Rho Reflection.

      That's it. For just $150 a year, you can become a
      Guardian Angel Sponsor of this growing publishing house,
      serving the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and
      seeking community of faith. Chi Rho Press is reaching
      people with resources that are not available anywhere
      else, resources that are made especially for our LGBT

      "Even though we have managed to keep the costs of this
      special ministry very low, we need your support to grow
      and to expand our outreach. Won't you help?" asks former
      Board member and continuing supporter Steve Barchers.

      Simply send your check for at least $150 to Chi Rho Press,
      ATTN: Guardian Angel Program, P.O. Box 7864, Gaithersburg,
      MD 20898. Or just go to our Web site at
      http://www.chirhopress.com/sponsor.html and click on the
      $150 contribution as a minimum to become a Guardian Angel.

      If you have specific questions about the Guardian Angel
      Program, you may e-mail us at Angels@..., or
      telephone us at 301/926-1208.

      Thank you for your support!


      3. "Sweet Rivers of Mercy"

      The wonderful and talented Kevin Larson, music director
      at my home congregation, Open Door MCC, Boyds, MD, USA,
      recently led our excellent choir in a new song. The
      words seemed so meaningful to us that I reprint them
      here for you. The song "Sweet Rivers of Mercy" is
      copyright 2007 by Blue Jack Music and published by
      Worship Today Music Service.

      "Sweet Rivers of Mercy"

      Sweet rivers of mercy are beckoning me
      To leave the comforts of shore;
      To wade in forgiveness, wash up with grace,
      Be cleansed forever more, be cleansed forevermore.

      God’s love like a spring in the wilderness flows
      An unexpected relief
      For ev’ry despairing, withering soul
      Who comes to kneel and drink, who comes to kneel and

      Streams of pardon, fresh and free;
      Source, Most Holy O taste and see!

      Lord knows how we long for a sip from the well,
      Afraid of praying for more,
      While pools of compassion, oceans of peace,
      Lie right outside our door, all faithfully ignored.

      Streams of pardon, fresh and free;
      Source, Most Holy O taste and see!

      Sweet rivers of mercy are beckoning me
      To leave the comforts of shore;
      Come wade in forgiveness, wash up with grace,
      And praise God evermore, praise God forevermore!


      4. May we Suggest "Steps to Recovery from Bible

      "Steps to Recovery from Bible Abuse" by Dr. Rembert
      Truluck is remarkable for many reasons. From a
      publishing standpoint, it is our largest book to
      date with over 550 pages. And it is the fastest
      selling and most popular book Chi Rho Press has ever

      The reasons for the popularity of "Steps" are clear.

      Dr. Truluck speaks the language of ordinary people of
      faith, his book is written in plain language that all
      can understand, and concentrates on the basics, God's
      creation, love, and redemption of ALL humanity.

      He has identified an important and lethal trend in the
      religious community, the tendency to be legalistic and
      judgmental and to use the faith and the Bible as a weapon
      to hurt people rather than a source of healing and love.

      Truluck concentrates on the Good News of the Bible, Good
      News that is for everyone, not just heterosexual white men.
      Too often LGBT commentators concentrate on defending their
      position that the Bible doesn't really say anything bad
      about homosexuality. This is true, and Dr. Truluck does
      devote four chapters to the pitifully few verses that have
      been used to condemn LGBT people. He effectively counters
      those who insist that the Bible condemns Gay people.

      But most of "Steps to Recovery from Bible Abuse" doesn't
      dwell on a rebuttal to those who use the Bible to attack
      LGBT people, but rather concentrates on those many
      passages of the Holy Scripture which speak words of
      love, understanding, tolerance, and joy for God's
      lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and
      those who love them. Dr. Truluck proves that the Bible
      is our friend!

      Lastly, Dr. Truluck offers a 12 Step program to counteract
      a history of Bible abuse in effective and joyful ways.
      The 12 Steps, plus a concluding thirteenth step, lead
      people through the pain inflicted on us by misunderstanding
      of the Bible and legalistic, judgmental religion, and on
      into the peace of God's love and acceptance. "Steps to
      Recovery from Bible Abuse" leads people from hate to love,
      from fear to confidence, and from pain to joy. It is a
      remarkable journey!

      We invite you to take this journey with us! Buy "Steps
      to Recovery from Bible Abuse" on the Chi Rho Press Web
      site at
      using your credit card on our secure shopping cart.


      5. "Christian with a Twist"

      Here is a selection from our book of reflections,
      "Christian with a Twist: Reflections on Scripture
      that are a bit more inclusive, a bit more relevant,
      and with a bit of a bite," by the late William Gaston.

      "Christian with a Twist" is available for $19.95 each,
      $14.95 each for six or more copies, plus shipping and
      handling. You can read more about it and order it at

      As the subtitle suggests, Bill's writing has a bit
      of a bite, and we believe you will enjoy his sharp,
      but loving take on Scripture, life, and faith.

      Here is a selection entitled "Who Do You Like Best,
      God?" from the Ordinary Time section of "Christian
      with a Twist."

      Please read Genesis 15:1-6 and Psalm 33:12-15

      The ancient Hebrew people and even the Jewish people
      of today look to this passage from Genesis as an
      indication, even a proof, that God chose them as
      a special people. We Christians do the same.
      Sometimes it seems that we forget that most of us
      could not be descended from Abraham that in his
      time our ancestors were doing something else entirely
      in Europe, Africa, Asia or even the Americas places
      that were a mostly unknown world to Abraham.

      Nobody's ancestors have ever been unknown to God,
      however. This passage is labeled, "God's Covenant
      with Abram" in my Bible. Sometimes we need to think
      that God is paying special attention to us. Sometimes
      we just cannot be satisfied with knowing that God
      loves all people. We need assurance that God loves
      us, us especially, that God loves us best.

      We, just as much as the Jews, use this passage for
      that. We also use Jesus and our love for him as a
      proof that we have a special claim on God's love.
      I suppose every religion, no matter what name they
      may have for God, has stories of special covenants
      between their own ancestors and their own God.

      This need to claim God as our own, sometimes
      portrayed as God claiming us, is probably as
      old as humankind. It is a part of our nature.
      Sometimes it is a part that gets us into trouble.
      We sometimes claim that God is a lot like us.
      We Christians sometimes even go so far as to
      make Jesus like us. Granted that is easier than
      trying to be like Jesus, but it does not turn out
      as well.

      While we can be happy knowing that our own nation,
      our own people, are God's heritage, we show more
      maturity and a higher level of faith, if we also
      know that God loves other nations and other people
      just as much. God's total and unconditional love
      is hard to comprehend. Maybe that is why we are
      sometimes like children who ask their parents,
      "Who do you like best?" I am not so sure that
      God told Abram that God liked him best or would
      favor him over all others. Maybe God was just
      assuring him that his people would survive and
      always be loved.



      6. Adam's Last Word

      Our annual Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary is
      now available!

      Please order now at


      I really encourage you all to become Guardian Angels
      of Chi Rho Press. This will help us a lot as we
      prepare our next books for publication. Just $150
      for a year will make you an important participant in
      this ministry.

      Thank you!


      Gracia y paz,

      Brother R. Adam DeBaugh, OSL
      Director, Adam@....


      We are glad you are partners in ministry with us here at
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      Copyright 2007, Chi Rho Press, Inc.
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