Dear friends:

In his book  Who Stole the American Dream?  (2012), the Pulitzer Prize winner Hedrick Smith argues that in the last thirty years, "we have become Two Americas."

A "gross inequality of income and wealth" has demolished the middle class dream. 

This wasn't inevitable, says Smith. It's not the result of "impersonal and irresistible market forces." Rather, it's the consequence of government policies and corporate strategies. 

Joseph Stieglitz, a Nobel Prize winner and former head of the World Bank, agrees. In his book  The Price of Inequality: How Today's Divided Society Endangers Our Future  (2013), he writes, "The top 1 percent of Americans gained 93 percent of the additional income created in the country in 2010, as compared with 2009." Like Smith, he says this didn't have to happen. 

In this cultural landscape, the issue for people of faith is less one of greed and envy and more about the need for hope grounded in human dignity.

This weekend, we’ll continue our sermon series on Jesus’ parables -- surprising stories that cast light on some of life’s most difficult issues. This week’s parable is among his most challenging. At first glance, it seems guilt-ridden, another manipulative effort to get wealthy people to feel bad. And yet, as we take a deeper dive into the story, I think we’ll discover it’s an invitation to life at its fullest. Try reading it twice before Sunday, and then we’ll dive into it together.

In addition, we’ll celebrate a beautiful baptism, enjoy excellent music, and be fortified for the living of these days. If you’d like to join Zoom worship at 9:30, invite some friends to join you by sharing this link . Our regular livestream can be found here.

With gratitude for you all,

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