Chris Yaw

I am a Christ Lover

Chris Yaw

I know, I'm kind of messy - but here goes... I’m an Episcopal priest serving a congregation in Metro Detroit... With a passion for gun safety... A zest for online Christian formation... A zeal for video blogging... A constant writer... A heart for those who have unintentionally harmed... A commitment to workforce housing... A love for marrying people... And an amazing wife, three kiddos and a cat named Sparrow... If you have interests in any of these areas I'd love to connect with you.

Me

Contact Details


  • St. David's Episcopal Church, 16200 W. Twelve Mile Road, Southfield, Michigan, 48076, USA


  • +011 248-557-5430


  • chris@stdavidssf.org

St. David's

I have served as rector of St. David's Episcopal Church in Southfield, MI for 16 years, join us Sundays in person or via zoom.

Trinity Gun Disposal

Working on the issue of unwanted gun disposal, we've made some real progress in helping rid the U.S. of unwanted firearms.

ChurchNext

Since 2013 we have been helping people learn more about faith through our online learning courses at ChurchNext.

Oakland Housing

Helping middle income families get better housing is a challenge that Oakland Housing has been addressing for 75 years.

Hyacinth Fellowship

Because hurting others hurts us, the Hyacinth Fellowship organizes support groups and reminds us that we are not our worst mistakes.

Yaw Wedding

I have been officiating weddings for more than 20 years and continue to find joy in helping couples build lifelong relationships.

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U.S. Guns Produced Today
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Americans Accidentally Killed Today
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Homeless Americans
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Weddings Performed
  • The Beatitudes

    The Beatitudes



    My friend Tim is a store manager for a huge, multi-national company.
    He’s bright, energetic, and will never, ever get promoted.

    Tim has always made it a practice to hire single moms, who desperately
    need the job, but whose low pay makes arranging reliable childcare
    nearly impossible.  That means, at the end of each year, when Tim goes
    in for his evaluation, his bosses point out the high tardiness and
    absenteeism rates of his employees.  They tell Tim he has to improve
    or he won’t move up.  Tim always promises to do better, though he
    knows next year will be the same thing.

    In this Sunday’s gospel you and I will hear some of Jesus’ most famous
    sayings: the Beatitudes.  These describe God’s World.  And what living
    in God’s World is like.  In God’s world, there are a lot of people
    like Tim – who would rather help single moms, than use them as
    stepping-stones on a career path.  There are a lot of people who
    choose to take the nondescript, unexceptional, and often unrewarded
    path of backing down from arguments, letting the guy in a hurry go
    first, and giving the neediest person – who might not be the best
    qualified – a break.

    When we follow Jesus, we know we’re headed to God’s world.  We find,
    like Tim, that it’s a world where making names for ourselves,
    increasing our social stature, climbing the ladder, padding the bank
    account, and putting ourselves ahead of others, all seem to fall short
    of the much more fulfilling activities of forgiving, accepting,
    reconciling, and deeply connecting with a God and a world that were
    meant for each other.

    How might you and I live with more intention, into God’s world?  How
    might we re-evaluate some of our goals and see how they might, more
    closely align with God’s?  How might we begin to show others that
    God’s world is our true home?

    Reading:
    Made in Detroit – Paul Clemens
    The Liturgical Year – Joan Chittister
    This is Not Your Parents’ Offering Plate – Clif Christopher
  • Book Review: The Liturgical Year

    Book Review: The Liturgical Year


    Thanks Thomas Nelson for this wonderful installation in 'The Ancient Practices' series.  As frequent readers know, I am a part of a book reviewing team for this publisher that has provided the book gratis in exchange for this review.

    Truth be told, I may have purchased the book regardless as Joan Chittister has yet to write anything not worth reading.   The theme is laid out at the beginning (p. 8), "This book is about the role of the church year in bringing each of us to a fuller understanding of the Christian life - and, most of all, it is about explaining precisely what it means to live a Christian life."   This is stated in various forms throughout, perhaps to assure the liturgically suspicious who stumble upon this book that it's OK to put the guard down and let the spirit breathe new life into holy traditions.

    Chittister weaves her way through the seasons with wit, charm, scholarship, and her characteristically obscure quotations that often inspire pause and ponder, taking great care, at every corner, to relate ancient practices to contemporary conditions.

    As a Roman Catholic nun Sr. Chittister carves up the year a bit differently than other liturgical traditions, ie. there are two periods of 'Ordinary Time' whereas Anglicans traditionally talk about 'Sundays after Epiphany' and 'Sundays after Pentecost' but not to get bogged down here, her insights are helpful whether you celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25 or Jan 7.

    Readers are helped along by large print, wide spacing, short chapters, and few words per page, it is, in many ways, an easy read, and one recommended for those curious about how the ancient themes, colors, and customs of the liturgical year help us live more Christianly today.
  • Light Has Dawned

    Light Has Dawned




    When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.
    Or, they go out to eat.
    Or out to drink.

    When the road gets dark and narrow and we can no longer see where are, we lighten things up with a new shirt, a nice meal, or a binge at the bars. These things can lighten our hearts and provide a flicker of joy - before the Reality Check Repo Man comes - and the darkness we’re so trying to avoid, inevitably descends.

    The shadows many of us find ourselves in are cast by mountains of bad decisions, forests of broken relationships, skyscrapers of worry, and glaciers of dashed dreams and repressed self-realizations: is this all there is?

    We long to be among those mentioned in this Sunday’s Gospel who have had an amazing encounter: “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, 
and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death, light has dawned."

    In Matthew 4, Jesus had just been baptized, spent 40 days in the desert, and heard his forerunner had been arrested - all this, effectively paving the way for the initiation of his ministry now, for the first time, revealed: to bring light to dark places – which are still around today. For we often find ourselves in the dark. Whether we walked there, were led there, or simply woke up there.

    Matthew seems to say that the end to our darkness is at hand – we no longer need linger because the light that chases away the dark is here. The light that reveals who we really are; beloved, cherished, valuable, even invaluable. This light longs to envelop us in promises of the reality of love and assurance – that there is no room dark enough, no shadow big enough, no night long enough to keep away the light.

    No matter what the source of our darkness, it cannot, it will not persist. That dense blanket of sadness, gloom, and despondency is not permanent. The night tremors and hopeless insomnia will pass – not because of what we do, but of who we are, a people called out of darkness into a marvelous light.

    Reading
    Not Your Parents Offering Plate – Clif Christopher
    Crush It! – Gary Vanyerchuk
    The Liturgical Year – Joan Chittister
  • What Are You Looking For?

    What Are You Looking For?



    The first words of Jesus, according to John’s Gospel, might be mistaken for those of a hardware store clerk, a produce manager, or a father who inadvertently discovers his 12-year-old rummaging through the liquor cabinet.

    ‘What are you looking for?’ Jesus asks two strangers, who had started tailing him at the behest of the much better-known, and admirably self-aware, co-reformer John the Baptist. It is a question whose subject – you – betrays the heart of a man and of a father whose main concerns lie beyond them.

    This first question is soon followed up with Jesus’ first command. It is not to bow down and worship, it is not to go to church, or even to be nice to your mother. Jesus first command is actually a gracious invitation, “Come and See.”
    These first words begin to paint for John, and for us, Christianity’s picture of God. This isn’t a god who’s out to test, torture, or frustrate us – though it may seem so at times – No, this is a God who desires, above all, to serve and to love – to invite and to welcome you and me.
    At this time of year, called Epiphany, which means ‘manifestation,’ this Sunday’s Gospel manifests God’s nature to us. We are reminded that God is, at the core, self-giving and kind-hearted. And when we sign on to follow Jesus, we are asked to behave in the same way.

    In what ways might our interaction with the world be characterized by service and love – by gracious invitation and radical welcome?  Christmas is the seminal proclamation that the monopoly of love is being broken. The world no longer relies solely on God’s grace and kindness – but on the grace and kindness God has put into our hearts to go out and share with the world.

    Reading
    The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work - Alain de Botton
    The Liturgical Year - Joan Chittester
    Crush It! - Gary Vanyerchuk
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    ADDRESS

    St. David's Episcopal Church, 16200 W. Twelve Mile Road, Southfield, MI 48076 USA

    EMAIL

    chris@stdavidssf.org

    TELEPHONE

    +011 248-557-5430