Ministers & Their Articles

CMC Active Ministers (102)

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We hope to see many of you (all of you?) on Easter Sunday for a truly happy and festive Sunday Gathering! Please join us and bring an Easter treat to share for after the Gathering. A chocolate Easter bunny, Easter eggs, how about a plate of ham … or a glass of champagne!!! (We always had champagne at the CMC Easter Sunday pot-lucks). We’ll all share our Easter treat together after the Gathering is over. We’ll get happy! Rev. Tony is promising a truly JoyFull Easter Celebration. "The time of Easter is a time of joy and not of mourning. Look on your risen Friend and celebrate his holiness along with me. For Easter is the time of your salvation, along with mine." (OrEd.Tx.20.4) Do you have a new Easter hat (a bonnet?). Now is the time!! 25 min. SUBSCRIBE & SHARE

Thursday, 01 April 2021 12:00

Happy Easter — Time for Chocolate?

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Dear Miracle Workers,

Easter is mentioned by name 12 times in the version of ACIM that I use. Christmas is only mentioned 5. Organized Christianity considers Easter to be the highest of holy days. Considering the frequency of mentions ACIM has, apparently Jesus considers it very important too. In the USA we tell people to be “merry” at Christmas, the usual greeting for Easter is “Happy Easter.” ACIM states, ”The time of Easter is a time of joy and not of mourning." (OrEd.Tx.20.4)

Considering the resurrection comes after the Good Friday crucifixion (aways made me wonder what was so “good” about it) the traditional Easter celebration was frequently tinged with the energy of torture and death. Plus organized Christianity tended to venerate the crucifixion itself. It made the cross the symbol of the faith. Many Christian churches have graphic, bloody, life size versions of Jesus (looking very much in pain) being crucified, prominently display in them. The one I grew up in did. Forty days of Lent focused on this painful event. Making a quick switch to joy and happy on Easter Sunday morning after 40 days of mourning was usually not very successful. ACIM spends lots of energy working to correct this misperception. "Let us not spend this holy week brooding on the crucifixion of God's Son, but happily in the celebration of his release. For Easter is the sign of peace, not pain." (OrEd.Tx.20.1)

Find something really fun to celebrate this Easter. The traditional Easter symbols are actually pagan fertility symbols – the rabbit, the egg. It’s associated with Spring and the birth of new life. While celebrating fertility might not be the most practical thing (maybe it is for some) a little happy chocolate indulgence might go a long way to bring some manifested joy to the faces of many.

(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #280, Apr. 1 2021)

Thursday, 25 March 2021 06:22

God Is the Love in Which We Forget

Written by
Dear Miracle Workers,
 
Lesson 46 teaches “God is the love in which I forgive.” For me, an easier way of doing this lesson is to say: “God is the love in which I forget.” The goal is to forget all that we think we need to forgive. Why?
 
We have God’s Love, but can’t know that Love until we make room for it. Every past thing that we remember as painful, whether small or large, done to us or by us, takes up space that Love could and would fill if the space were open. To open the space simply requires that we, in this present moment, completely drop the story we’ve been remembering about what happened. The present moment is the only moment. If we can keep the present moment free of the past, Love will fill the space. To allow Love to fill the space is forgiveness. Make a decision to simply forget.
 
Is it that easy? When we look at a tree or a bird or a flower, it is not hard to think of it as being in harmony with God. We do not think of the tree as thinking of itself as somehow separate from nature, from God. The tree does not think. It just is. It exists in harmony – as do the flower and the bird. To see others as God does, see them as a tree, or a bird, or a flower, existing in harmony with God. On a level that our eyes cannot see, that is the truth of who they are…and of who we are.
 
(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #279, Mar. 23 2021)

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We sometimes fall prey to the temptation to follow the ego's dictates and look for that special someone or something that will make us feel loved, whole and complete. Lesson 77 states "Let miracles replace all grievances," that we not find our peace and joy staring in the mirror of the ego world. Clearly, you will not find it there. My talk will inspire to you to see beyond the body or the shield of hate to the true beauty and essence of your brothers and sisters. Come to receive the miracles you are entitled to this Sunday!! 29 min. SUBSCRIBE & SHARE

Saturday, 20 March 2021 21:24

This World Is a Dream

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Dear Miracle Workers,

I’ve heard a few A Course in Miracles teachers throughout the years say that this world is a school. Apparently many different spiritual teachings say this. I understand if that’s helpful to them, but the Course makes it clear that the world is a dream. I guess I'm a purist. I find the Course to be very literal and very direct. We are here to forgive the dream. "I am upset because I see something that is not there." (OrEd.WkBk.6) Clearly I must be hallucinating. In fact, I think the whole Course is based on the fact that we are already home in God dreaming that we are separate.

So, how is it a school? We are here to remember our identity. "Your goal is to find out who you are." (OrEd.WkBk.62.2) "Your picture of the world can only mirror what is within." (OrEd.WkBk.73.5) I understand to a degree (pun intended) that these lessons make it sound like a school, but a school also implies that it takes time. And time is not real. Plus, the Holy instant can take you straight to God. "We will succeed today if you remember that you will salvation for yourself." (OrEd.WkBk.73.8) It means you can reach God today.

It's really not important whether you believe it's a school or not, except you might be tempted to relax your practice and coast a little. Getting your degree takes hard work and a lot of study, and although the Course takes discipline I'd like to remind us all that miracles are natural and happen without effort. Allow the Course to be easy, because in truth, it is. Use the idea of school only if it's helpful and drop it if it interferes with your progress.

Blessings

(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #278, Mar.16 2021)

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The Course message about absolute power is a challenging thing. Many shy away from claiming this, and usually approach the Course with the idea of incremental, and therefore limited, increases in power. However the Course is clear that there is nothing our holiness cannot do. In other words, our power is infinite, unlimited, and … absolute! "Your holiness, then, can remove all pain, can end all sorrow, and can solve all problems. It can do so in connection with yourself and with anyone else." (OrEd.WkBk.38.2) There is no time like the present moment (actually there is no time but the present moment) to claim our unlimited power. The world tells us that “absolute power corrupts absolutely” but ACIM tells us just the opposite. Absolute power saves us and heals us absolutely. Join us on Sunday as we allow the teaching here to transform our experience of self. "Your holiness reverses all the laws of the world. It is beyond every restriction of time, space, distance, and limits of any kind. Your holiness is totally unlimited in its power because it establishes you as a Son of God, at one with the Mind of his Creator." (OrEd.WkBk.38.1) 23m. SUBSCRIBE & SHARE

Thursday, 11 March 2021 22:50

Desire Is the Key

Written by
Dear Miracle Workers,
 
Recently, I was thinking about healing in life because some friends were experiencing life from the standpoint of grievances. You can feel their pain and suffering. I realized that when grievances rule your life, you can not receive the gifts of God. I thought about the years before I discovered A Course in Miracles when I believed that I was powerless over so many things in my life. I was powerless over my past, other people and wounds that seem to recycle in a persistent manner. I experienced periods of hell that is the ego’s gift to us and our perceived powerlessness. A Course in Miracles woke me up to another possibility!
 
The desire to be the Son of God is more powerful than our grievances! We must decide for ourselves that we have the power in our Minds to transform the seemingly intransigent pain from the past. We cannot embrace victimhood if we choose to be free. A Course in Miracles asks the Son of God, “Do I desire a world where I am powerful instead of helpless?” (FIP.21:VII:5:12) Well, do you? Sometimes, it’s a hard choice to stop “clinging to the old rugged cross.” (FIP.4:Intro:3:7) This willingness leads us to a better place.
 
The essential reality of our lives is that we must desire to change our thinking with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit! The desire to renounce bondage, rage, guilt and sin which counsels misery and fear preached by the ego appears impossible. When we decide to replace it the Holy Spirit’s still and gentle voice may be subtle, but it is enormously consequential. “You are not this littleness, my child ..." says the spirit. "You are love, joy, and peace eternal. It is your present and eternal future.” Pray for this desire when It seems impossible. Pray for this desire when it seems improbable. Pray for this desire until you experience peace and see innocence everywhere. Amen.
 
(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #277, Mar. 11 2021)

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(Have a piece of birthday cake ready to eat on Sunday – Honestly!!) Sunday March 7th the CMC celebrates its 34th birthday. On the 1st Sunday of March in 1987 Rev. Tony Ponticello and Rev. Larry Bedini (our co-founders) met with a handful of others to have our first meeting as the new legal entity the Community Miracles Center! This Sunday we celebrate that momentous day. As a special celebration every one of our 8 CMC Board Members will take a part in the Sunday Gathering and also say a few words about what this day means for them. Rev. Tony will give the main address. After we sing "Happy Birthday" we’ll all eat a piece of cake together so have a piece of cake ready for after the Gathering. If you are thinking of getting us a “birthday present” consider a special $34 donation – $1 for every terrific year of service to the ACIM Community. A couple of people have already done just that that. 22m. SUBSCRIBE & SHARE

Friday, 05 March 2021 23:57

The Purpose of the World

Written by
Dear A Course in Miracles Students,
 
The purpose of the world from the ego's view is to get whatever you can however you can and do it before you die. Oh – and you’re always right and everyone else is wrong. And compare yourself and your progress of "getting and knowing" (being right) to everyone you meet. Then ... you die. That's the ego’s purpose. The Holy Spirit gently asks that you change the purpose of the world to forgiveness or true perception. The Holy Spirit simply says, "You cannot change, because your function has been fixed by God. ... Forgiveness does not aim at keeping time but at its ending when it has no use." (OrEd.29.41)
 
I mention forgiveness specifically because of the presidential election next week. Apply these ideas to the winner whoever he may be. Do not allow your fearful ego to tell you that all is lost or that you're moving to Canada ... or that you hate anyone. We cannot hate. Hate, judgment, loss, comparison and "being right" are all part of the ego mentality that we came to heal. It's easily done if we give a new purpose to the world we see. That purpose is forgiveness. "Only my condemnation injures me." (OrEd.WkBk.198) We can do this. It is why we came. Blessings.
 
(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #263, Oct. 28 2020)
Friday, 05 March 2021 23:52

The Dinner Table

Written by
Dear Miracle Workers,
 
As we sat across the dinner table I thought, “Does she have to know my name? Does she have to laugh at my jokes? Does she have to know my God?” My sister Cindy told me for years, “Momma’s not gonna change, Kim.”
 
This did not deter me! I kept trying to get Momma to change. I kept smiling, trying to get her to laugh at my jokes, call me by my name, and know that I believe God is Love. Alas, Momma is contented with the way things are. Three squares and running water is living in high cotton!
 
When I accepted the Atonement for myself, the idea became clearer to me. I need only accept the Atonement for myself. I have old thought patterns. A Course of Love talks about thought patterns. “What this means is that you are still in need of unlearning, of undoing old patterns of thought. This is atonement and it is continuous and ongoing until it is no longer needed.” (2Tr.4:15)
 
As we sit across the dinner table, my mother and I, I realize we love each other. We do not understand each other and that does not mean anything.
 
A Course in Miracles Workbook Lesson 49 states, “God’s Voice speaks to me all through the day.” The part of my mind in which truth abides is in constant communication with God whether I am aware of it or not. Dinnertime has become a time to get very still and listen to the Voice of Truth, which is calm, always at rest and wholly certain. Lesson 49 continues, “We are trying to reach your real home. We are trying to reach the place where you are truly welcome. We are trying to reach God.” (OrEd.WkBk.49.4) 
 
This is Truth.
 
(originally appeared in Miracles Weekly #282, Apr. 13 2021)
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Select CMC Minister

  • Rev. Tony Ponticello is CMC Minister #20. He was ordained on Oct. 17, 1997. He is Executive Minister of Community…
  • Rev. Peter Graham is CMC Minister #40. He was ordained on Feb. 23, 2002. He serves on the CMC Board…
  • Deb Canja is a spiritual teacher dedicated to removing the obstacles that prevent us from experiencing self-love and inner peace.…
  • Rev. Joanie Schaeffer-Goss is CMC Minister #71. She was ordained on Feb. 16, 2014. She co-facilitates the "Southern Spirit Sisters"…
  • Rev. Kim Wilson is CMC minister #85. She was ordained Mar. 15, 2015. She teaches CMC's Tue. evening A Course…
  • Rev. Paula Carpe is CMC minister #125. She was ordained Feb. 14, 2021. She teaches CMC's Wed. morning 9:00 a.m.…
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