How the earthly and divine came together on the walls of a Basque church

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Basque church:ANTEZANA DE FORONDA, Spain (RNS) The Iglesia de San Miguel is the pride of this tiny town in Spain’s Basque Country. Yet the 16th-century church, with its spectacular wooden carvings and baroque altarpiece, had fallen on hard times. Residents had saved the church once, decades ago, when they mobilized to fight an airport extension, just steps away from their beloved sanctuary. In recent years, forces of nature and passage of time were taking their toll on the town shrine. “We saw our cultural identity slipping away,” explained Diego Bermejo, a…

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Remind Me Why We’re Still Together?

“We’re getting a divorce,” my friend told me over the phone.A divorce after so many years of marriage? After having gone through so much together? After raising children? Why? What happened?But I knew the answer. I had heard it so often lately and from many different friends and acquaintances: boredom, growing apart, sitting in front of each other and having nothing to say, lack of romance and intimacy, feeling like two strangers, not seeing eye to eye, unwillingness to continue to put up with issues that one has endured for…

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Together on Your Knees

In our early dating days, my boyfriend (now my husband) and I liked to wander into a little church in Chicago, to sit in the light of the stained glass windows together and take time to pray. We loved this church, with its grand sweeping sanctuary and gothic arches; it was easy to feel in awe of God in the midst of such ornate beauty. The church is right on Michigan Avenue, the bustling shopping district downtown, but once you stepped inside the sanctuary, everything was calm. It was this…

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A Couple that Prays Together

A couple that prays together, stays together. Who hasn’t heard of that phrase?I’m sure you’ve also heard it said many other ways, but for the purpose of this article–I’m sticking to the issue of prayer!Before my husband and I got married, we chose 1 Peter 4:12-13 as our wedding verse. I know it’s not the typical “love is…” verses, but then again we’re not the typical couple!Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you…

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‘What God Has Joined Together’

Introduction Someone once said that, if you want to be eternally relevant, you need to stop trying to say things that are relevant and focus on saying things that are eternal. Some ministers write their sermons according to what has featured in the news that week. When I was training for the ministry, a former Moderator of the General Assembly advised such a course. The difficulty with that approach is that the minister flits from one subject to the next, trying to scratch where it itches, as he, perhaps unwittingly,…

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