The Riches of the Church

“ven if they are overlooked by the powers of this world, the poor who to
us may be nameless, and who die in remote places, are treasures in
God’s own heart.” From the sermon in this post

Faith Improvised

The biblical texts in the lectionary for today have to do with riches and poverty:

Amos 6:1a, 4-7
Psalm 146
1 Timothy 6:6-19
Luke 16:19-31

Our rector, Stephen Holmgren, told this story that resonates with the trajectory of these passages:

At the center of the ancient Forum in Rome are the remains of a large Roman Temple with an inscription to the Emperor Antonius Pius.  The Temple is preserved because it was incorporated into a Christian Church.  The name of this church derives from events following a persecution of Christians by the Roman Emperor Valerian, beginning in the year 257.  It targeted the clergy and lay leaders of the Christian community.  Christians were rounded up, their property was taken, and gatherings for worship and fellowship were banned.  Though some details are disputed, in August of 258, Bishop Sixtus II and some of his deacons were found meeting for worship in…

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