Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 52 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Rector's Rambling - June 20, 2010

Today, on the secular calendar, is Father’s Day. Congrats and well wishes to all the ‘dads’ in the congregation! May God bless all dads in their continued responsibility to be a good husband to their wife and father to their children. And above all, may you call upon His Grace to help you to be an earthly example of His Fatherly love from heaven!

Today in the Church there is some desire to move away from the title of “Father” for God, the first person of the Holy Trinity. A combination of a desire to change the revealed doctrines about Him, a desire to make the church more feminine, or a reaction to the hurts caused by sinful earthly fathers giving “Father” a bad name. All these have given some pause to the use of the title “Father”.

But all other titles pale in comparison, since it is this name that He gives us himself, and Jesus calls Him Father as well. The title “Mother” for a deity is pagan in origin, and besides which Jesus had a mother (Mary). But His father is God. Other titles for the first person of the Holy Trinity, as well as the other persons, are usually based on His attributes: Creator, Redeemer, Sustainer. These are attributes of all three persons of the Trinity, not proper titles of the persons.

It is unfortunate that some fathers neglect their responsibilities and give “Father” a bad name. All us dads are called to look to our heavenly Father for the example of all accepting love, caring concern and involvement in the life of our children, and strength of character by grace-filled virtuous living. And when we fail, repent and make amends!

Rather than judging the title “Father” by poor earthly imitations, may we always know that it is our heavenly Father to whom the ideal of Fatherhood is to be attributed, and to which all men are called to emulate.