Get a fresh take on God, spirit, faith, life, love, justice, and community. First Church Berkeley is an open and affirming, progressive Christian church in Berkeley, California, part of the United Church of Christ. We are committed to Jesus’ countercultural and life-giving path. We understand the life of spirit to be a journey, not a destination. Our podcast features the powerful preaching of several of the ministers on staff and special guests. More about the church at firstchurchberkeley.org.
Rachel reflects on the story of the meeting between Mary and her cousin Elizabeth, both pregnant. Each of is like Mary—with a miracle within us ready to be birthed—and each of us is like Elizabeth—able to recognize and bless the miracles we see in others.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 19.49MB - Duration: 20:36 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
First Church member Elizabeth Driver-Bucholtz, and ministers Molly Baskette and Kit Novotny share vignettes about the challenges and joys of conception, pregnancy, and birth.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 37.36MB - Duration: 40:07 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
Kit Novotny ponders the nature of arrivals and departures and the signs of what is to come. Along with the waiting and impatience is the good news that God is already on the way.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 15.54MB - Duration: 16:17 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
Phil Porter suggests that Christianity’s “superpower” to counter the rise in organized hate is the radical idea of not returning evil for evil but to respond instead with love. “Don’t be mean!”
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 20.65MB - Duration: 21:52 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
Rachel Bauman suggests that the story of the raising of Lazarus and the words in Revelations spoke not only to the life-giving power of Jesus acts and God’s presence, but were also wider messages of hope to people in challenging situations.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 19.05MB - Duration: 20:07 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
“You are the light of the world." Senior Minister Molly Baskette suggests that this is both metaphorically and biologically true. We are each full of God’s light, and we can shine our light as we travel in the world, especially in places of darkness.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 12.24MB - Duration: 12:41 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
Jesus heals the blind beggar Bartamaeus. Young Adult Minister Kit Novotny notices that it isn’t completely clear whether Bartamaeus was healed because he had faith or that his faith was the result of being healed. Is faith the chicken or the egg?
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 20.91MB - Duration: 22:09 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
Guest preacher Rev. Sophia DeWitt weaves together Jeremiah’s stories of the Israelites who were overtaken by the Babylonians and the lepers who were cured by Jesus to explore the different ways one might be exiled both physically and psychologically.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 27.31MB - Duration: 29:08 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)
On the first Sunday of this year’s stewardship campaign, Senior Minister Molly Baskette explores the story of Moses, Aaron and the golden calf, and asks the congregation to think about money, gratitude, generosity, and humility.
Filetype: MP3 - Size: 23.64MB - Duration: 25:08 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)