While Riverside Baptist awaits completion of its new church building at 7th and Maine Streets SW, the congregation has started joint 11 a.m. Sunday worship with Westminster Presbyterian at 4th and I Streets SW.

Riverside Pastor Michael Bledsoe and Westminster Co-Pastors Brian and Ruth Hamilton alternate preaching and the services are a rich blend of the varied music styles, traditions, and creativity of their worship.

Ruth Hamilton says, “As progressive, interracial, LGBTQ-affirming congregations, we already have a lot in common. We look forward to continuing this ecumenical partnership even when Riverside moves into its new building this fall.”

Resistance Bible Study, developed by Reverend Dr. Jim Burklo, who is chaplain at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, is led Sunday mornings from 10 to 10:45 a.m. by Denise Diaab, a second-career senior at San Francisco Theological Seminary, where she will earn her Master’s of Divinity and become a candidate for minister of word and sacrament.

About this approach to Bible study, Burklo says: “This study of the Bible seeks inspiration in it for the defense of American democracy. Our approach to the biblical texts will model the resistance required to stop our nation’s current slide toward totalitarianism. Just as we must interpret our present crisis without dogmatic preconceptions, we’ll read the Bible without a doctrinal filter. We’ll read it meditatively: letting it lift us above fear and frustration and direct us into deliberative action. We’ll read the signs of our present times in historical context, and read the Bible in the same way. We’ll be listening for echoes from the Bible resonating from the U.S. Constitution.” All are welcome.

By: Reverend Ruth Hamilton

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