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Happy New Church Day!

“After the completion of this book, the Lord called together His twelve disciples, who had followed Him in the world; and a day later He sent them all forth throughout the spiritual world to preach the Gospel, that the Lord God Jesus Christ is king, and His kingdom shall be for ever and ever, as foretold by Daniel (Daniel 7:13-14) and in Revelation (Revelation 11:15):

Blessed are they who come to the wedding supper of the Lamb, Revelation 19:9.

This happened on the nineteenth of June in the year 1770. This was meant by the Lord’s saying:

He will send his angels, and they will gather together His chosen people from the bounds of the heavens on one side as far as the bounds of the heavens on the other, Matthew 24:31. ”

~True Christian Religion 791

Just what did He do?

What the Old Christianity teaches:

“The belief that the passion of the cross was redemption itself is the fundamental error of the church; and this error, together with the error respecting three Divine persons from eternity, has perverted the whole church to such an extent that there is nothing spiritual left in it. What at the present day more fills and crams the books of the orthodox, or what is more zealously taught and inculcated in the schools, or what is more frequently preached and proclaimed from the pulpit, than that God the Father, being angry with the human race, not only put it away from Himself, but also included it under a universal damnation, and thus excommunicated it; but being gracious, He persuaded or inspired His Son to descend and take upon Himself this determined damnation, and thus appease the anger of His Father; and that under no other conditions could the Father look with favor upon mankind? And further, that this was actually done by the Son; in that by taking upon Himself the damnation of the human race He suffered Himself to be scourged, to be spit upon, and finally crucified by the Jews as one “accursed of God” (Deuteronomy 21:23); and after this had been done the Father was propitiated, and from love for His Son canceled the damnation, but only on behalf of those for whom the Son might intercede, and that the Son thus became a Mediator perpetually before His Father. ” —True Christian Religion 132

What the New Christianity teaches:

“Redemption was a subjugation of the hells, a restoration of order in the heavens, and the establishment of a new church, because without these no one could have been saved. Moreover, they follow in order; for the hells must be subjugated before a new angelic heaven can be formed; and this must be formed before a new church can be established on earth; because men in the world are so closely connected with angels of heaven and spirits of hell as on both sides to be one with them in the interiors of their minds.” —True Christian Religion 115

Silver Branch Arts

From the Admin: This week we have a guest article by the creators of Silver Branch Arts–a directory of New Church artists and craftsmen. Enjoy! 

It started as a small visit here and an after church conversation there. The topic was the same: craft sales were fun, inspiring and a powerful motivation to spend time creating, but was there a better way to make uniquely New Church art and handwork available year round and to a wider audience? Could we create an online way to showcase beautiful things and the people who make them?

The process began in earnest as regular meetings around plates of cookies and cups of tea. First we voted on a name for our fledgling organization: Silver Branch Arts and Handwork. A name to honor the many ways women and men create with their hearts and hands. It was derived from the memorable relation where art and statues filled the garden, a beautiful rainbow appeared on the wall and the gift of grapes with leaves of silver was Swedenborg’s parting gift.

But then the real work began! We were a bunch who didn’t know how to make an email account, how to make a webpage or make digital pictures behave the way we wanted. We called in experts and read books from the library. We learned to use Zoho Mail, WordPress and Google Docs. We wrote letters, applications and mission statements. Slowly the dream became a reality.

Silver Branch Arts features one artist each month, showcasing their work and sharing a brief biography written by the artist. These pages are then moved and contained in the Archive section of the site so past artists can be reviewed. The Directory page shows all the artists that have joined Silver Branch and gives examples of the art they create and the way to contact them for purchasing their work. The remaining pages tell the viewer of our mission and how to contact us. Our site went live in April and we have had a steady stream of new artists joining us, new followers and a increase of emails that receive our updates.

We are a small band of folks trying to honor the teachings of the New Church in art form. We hope you look at our site, consider filling out an application if you are an artist or enjoy and purchase beautiful art and handwork from around the world as a consumer.

Heather King for the Silver Branch Team

Terry’s Passing

This is a Guest post written by Geneva Echols

For the last year an a half I have worked as companion and caretaker of an adult woman living with severe limitations and disabilities. I was asked to move in with Anne and take over the daily care of her, her house, and her needs. Though I work as part of a team of caretakers, I am in the unique position of being the lead nurturer and authority in Anne’s life, though she is almost twice my age.

I am convinced that the Lord lead me to this job, this life, and this family. And He has been present here every day since.

I moved in 2 weeks before Anne’s mom, Terry, passed away from ovarian cancer. I knew them from church, when I moved down to GA in 2011, but I had only really gotten to know them when they rented me a room while I looked for an apartment in 2013.

Terry was someone to look up to; to immediately admire and esteem. She exuded confidence, faith, intellect and patience. She would make the time to invite you to her home for food and conversation, always leaving the guest with a sense of worth, love, and acceptance. But even as she accepted you, she would gently guide anyone towards the Lord through example mixed with active listening. In short, she is one of my heroes, and I will always be grateful that the Lord put her in my life.

Terry was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2014. I still remember the night she called me to tell me. I was alone in my apartment, sitting in the dim evening light. I answered her call expecting to chat and maybe talk about our weekly dinner. She was calm as she explained that all of the symptoms that we had been observing were not just prolonged indigestion, but a large tumor that was now inoperable. She didn’t have many answers or even a clear understanding of what the next step was, she just knew that she had to start making some plans for the future. My role in that plan was to be part of the team that cared for Anne. Without thinking about what that might mean, what might be asked of me, I said yes.
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