#FlashbackFriday #Cincinnati #ArtHistory

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In what church does this masterfully-created sculpture by Preston Powers currently reside?

The Glendale New Church!

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In 1880, a marble bust of Swedenborg by sculptor Preston Powers was presented to the church. It was on loan to the Cincinnati Art Museum for several years, and to the Chicago Society during the Chicago World’s Fair.  Most recently, it was on display locally, in conjunction with the exhibit: In Company with Angels: Seven Rediscovered Tiffany Windows. 10 June-11 Sept. 2011, Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati, Ohio. 

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A Life Well Lived

Life is about how we live our lives, not the praise and recognition we get from other people, the academic degrees we earn, the corporate titles we have, or the number and type of material possessions we collect.

“The life that leads to heaven is not one of withdrawal from the world but a life in the world … it is a life of thoughtfulness, a life of behaving honestly and fairly in every duty, every affair, every task, from our deeper nature and therefore from a heavenly source.” Emanuel Swedenborg, Heaven and Hell, (trans. Dole), n. 535(3)

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Our lives cycle very much like the cycles of nature—we experience the four seasons within our bodies and spirits. The seasons of nature affect and reflect our current nature and spiritual state of being. Here in the Midwest, we are in the fall season. The trees are displaying their variegated colors—blazing golds, flaming reds, brilliant yellows. The sky is peppered with V formations of geese flying south to warmer weather. The crops are gathered, the pumpkins are harvested, and we’ve awoken several mornings to grass trimmed with crystal frost.

In the fall, we need to be stockpiling those things we’ve been nurturing and maintaining throughout the summer season—those things that will take us through winter. Spiritually, this is a time to reflect on each of the good and true things that have come to fruition in our lives. This is the time to begin celebrating and sharing these things with others, enjoying each other’s gifts and good will.

“[A]ngelic life consists of worthwhile, thoughtful actions, actions that are useful to others, and that all the happiness angels have is found in service, derives from service, and is proportional to service.”
Emanuel Swedenborg, Heaven and Hell (trans. Dole), n. 403

We can better live our “useful service” in this world if we furnish our minds with love for the neighbor and the ways of doing good to all. In this way, we show respect for all of God’s creation and from these resources of the Diving Being, we glean inner strength and peace in a world that can appear to be chaotic. We gain inner strength from this spiritual practice. From this place within, we can listen to the still small voice and receive the necessary guidance that will direct us on the personal spiritual pathway that God wants for us.

“The life of angels is cheerful and blessed. It consists of worthwhile activities that are deeds of thoughtfulness.”
Emanuel Swedenborg, Heaven and Hell (trans. Dole), n. 535(1)

~~Sue Marie & Rev. Bob

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#WeekendPlans Harvest #Feast!

We will be happily sharing food, worship and time at our annual Harvest Feast this Sunday, November 19, 2017.  It will be held at 11 am at the Glendale New Church, 845 Congress Avenue. Rev. Jenn Tafel will be our visiting minister. The New Church of Montgomery will provide the turkey. Please bring something yummy to share with others if you are able. We look forward to this delicious event.

Kindly RSVP to: newchurchofmontgomery@gmail.com

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Nothing says Thanksgiving like two pans of stuffing! Vegetarian and Regular.

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#TuesdayTip: “Cram a Cruiser” this Saturday @MontgomeryOhio

Join Operation Giveback at the Harper’s Point Kroger and help them CRAM A CRUISER with food items, just in time for Thanksgiving! Symmes Township Police Officers will be on hand to collect donations. Saturday, November 18, 2017, 11 am-3 pm.cram-a-cruiser2

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It’s #MindfulMonday, Just #Breathe

We can be easily overwhelmed at the start of a new week. There’s so much to do; where do we begin?! Remember to breathe. Emanuel Swedenborg “had begun in early childhood to experiment with respiration. He noticed that thought synchronizes with breathing; in fact, thoughts “flow in,” as does the air in breathing. Thus he discovered at an early age the “stream of consciousness” as it later came to be known in Western literature.” http://www.swedenborgstudy.com/articles/Swedenborgs-revelation/sl80.htm

My breathing was developed by the Lord in such a way that I was able to breathe inwardly for quite a long time without the help of outside air, so the breathing was directed inwardly,(Swedenborg, SD 3317)

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Leave the #Rest, #Weekend Thoughts

leave-the-restThe statement, “Take what you need and leave the rest,” is frequently quoted in addiction therapy, since not everything in treatment program tenets will mesh with one’s worldview.  Some things will make sense, however, and help people on their way to recovery.

We can have fun with this quote, however, and flip it to apply to finding spiritual rest. Are we selfishly substituting what we want, for what we really need, and then resting in our own misguided conclusions? Would we find our rest if we abandoned the urgent and mundane and focused on what was important? Are we, as Stephen Covey proposes in The Urgency Addition” choosing things that are urgent but not necessarily valuable?

“…Swedenborg learned, that the Lord’s six days of labor and one day of rest in creating the universe was a metaphor for our own spiritual journey.” ~swedenborg.com

However you interpret this quote in your life, rest easy knowing it’s Sunday.

This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24

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#FlashbackFriday Oak & Winslow, Before I-71

Did you know the New Church of Montgomery used to be known as the Society of the New Jerusalem, and once had a handsome church downtown? Eminent domain caused the church to be demolished in order to literally “pave the way” for Interstate 71.
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You can read more about this building and the early Cincinnati church in Carol Skinner Lawson’s essay, “It’s Not in Buildings,” contained within the book, “A Harvest of Women’s Wisdom,” edited by Alice B. Skinner, from Swedenborg Foundation Press.

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