Author Archives: smaxreisert

About smaxreisert

I'm a United Church of Christ pastor serving the small, faithful Old South Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, in Hallowell, Maine. I was ordained in Massachusetts in 1995, moved to Maine in 1997 and have served the Hallowell church since 2005.

Living in the Midst of Dying

It’s a hard time to be a traditional Mainline church. It feels harder still to be a traditional church in a part of the world that often feels not only indifferent to organized Christianity, but sometimes even hostile. Such is … Continue reading

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Mr. Trump, Evangelical Christians, and the Central Park 5

14With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah that says:“You will indeed listen, but never understand,   and you will indeed look, but never perceive. 15 For this people’s heart has grown dull,   and their ears are hard of hearing,     and they have shut their eyes;     so … Continue reading

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A Few Thoughts on Buildings and Churches

During my recent vacation, my husband and I found ourselves with a few unexpected hours in Aberdeen, Scotland. While wandering around the city, we noticed a few church buildings (not really a surprise; we tend to notice church buildings everywhere … Continue reading

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Vacation!

My husband and I are off to Scotland for almost three weeks to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary.   If you would like to see what we are up to: Susan and Joe Scotland 2019

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Get Outside and Look Up

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the star that you have established; what are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them?” Psalm 8 This small … Continue reading

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None Mother

My daughter recently graduated from college. During the graduation ceremony, the senior class speaker offered a rather confusing, rambling speech interjected with giggles (she seemed very nervous). Given the prestige of this particular college, I was a little taken aback … Continue reading

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Understanding the Limits of Welcome

This past Sunday was one of the more bizarre worship experiences I’ve had during my relatively long tenure as pastor and teacher at Old South Church in Hallowell, Maine. Let’s set the scene: The previous Sunday was Children’s Sunday and … Continue reading

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