The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

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April 16, 2013

Church remains shining light

As I reflected on the terrible event in Boston, we must admit that evil is very strong in the world. Prayers go out to all those in Boston. In a world that honors running over your neighbor for personal gain, evil remains very strong in the many ways that people hurt each other.

However, in the midst of this pain, stands the powerful light of the Church. In our local area, several churches have responded to raise money for Relay for Life, to feed the hungry, to help orphans all over the world, to send missionaries all over the world, and to help many places like Camp Victory. Wonderful things are being done by many different Christian denominations and many different faith communities. I am truly amazed at the wonderful work being done by the churches in our local areas and in the world no matter the size of the church.

In June, I am working with several United Church of Christ churches to foster a peace camp where we will bring youth together from the countries of Africa, Germany, Cheyenne Indian reservation in South Dakota, and Pennsylvania to live together for two weeks and work on peace projects. They will then go to Washington D.C. to meet with elected officials.

In the Church, we teach people how to love each other, respect each other, and how to work together. We teach values that are different from the world. It is wonderful to see Christian denominations working together with other faith traditions in many different causes. Many other faith traditions are also doing wonderful things to create peace and love in the world.

Thus, we need to remember that while the world may appear dark there is a very strong light shining in the world helping to foster peace, love, and joy throughout the world. At times like this, we need to remember: The light always outshines the darkness. Evil knows that its time is short.

The Rev. Ricky Phillips, Mazeppa Union Church, St. John's Church of Dry Valley

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