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Seeing and being Seen

We are trilled to welcome back Rev. Dr. Jonathan Mitchell, Pastor Emeritus of The Garden Church. He will lead us this Sunday and next in worship.

Rev. Jonathan says the following about the message for this Sunday: "This Sunday we continue our series on the women of the Old Testament with Hagar. Hagar was remarkable in that she saw God and gave God a name.

Here is her story in brief. Hagar was an Egyptian woman enslaved to Sarah. When Sarah is unable to conceive a child, she offers Hagar to Abraham to conceive and bear an heir for them. When Hagar does conceive, she is treated harshly by Sarah, and flees to the desert. It is there she sees God and is told to return to Sarah and Abraham. After Hagar gives birth to her son Ishmael, Sarah unexpectedly conceives and gives birth to her son Isaac. Now perceiving Hagar and Ismael as rivals to her and her son, Sarah has them sent away.

Let us note that it was given to Hagar -- enslaved, exploited and occupying the lowest rung of the patriarchal social structure in force at that place and time -- to see God and name God. And let us carefully note the name she gave God: "El Roi," "The God who sees."

At the Garden Church we believe everyone, whatever their position in society, is seen and loved by God. Accordingly, we respect everyone who joins us as someone to be seen, and as someone who may well see and name God for us.

Join us this Sunday to see and be seen as we name God for each other."

Rev. Jonathan Mitchell has been a Swedenborgian Minister for 25 years, serving ministries in Washington DC, Wayfarers Chapel, San Diego, and most recently the Garden Church (2017-2022), He looks forward to seeing how the Garden and you all have grown over the last year.

Thank you for joining me in welcoming back Rev. Jonathan to the garden this Sunday.

In Faith,

Rev. Amanda

Sunday Rhythm:

3pm Work Together

4pm Worship Together

5pm Eat Together

All Are Welcome

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