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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Weddings Performed
  • 2022: The Year of Gratitude

    2022: The Year of Gratitude


     

    How fitting that Advent kicks off just a few days after Thanksgiving, giving us a terrific introduction into the new year, 2022, which our Parish is calling the Year of Gratitude.

    In 2022 we will encourage one another to be especially thankful for God's blessings, to look reflectively at the events in our lives for which we may not initially be thankful, and to discover anew how thankfulness lies at the heart of our faith and as a foundation of joyful, Christ-centered living.

    After all, psychological study after study shows us that grateful people are healthier, cope better with adversity, and actually live longer than people who are not intentionally grateful. Because when we’re grateful we’re more present - we’re more alive.

    To do that we have a rather kitchy challenge for you: Next time you come to church we are going to offer you a blue ‘Gratitude' wristband (see above). We invite you to put it on your right wrist or in your right pocket and wear it for 21 days straight. However, during that time you can’t complain. If you do complain, you have to say 2 ‘gratitudes’ (things for which you are grateful), and then transfer the wristband to the left wrist or your left pocket. You get to start all over again the next day.

    I know some of you are already going to ask for two wristbands, one for each wrist, so you won't have to keep transferring it back and forth...

    And while this, admittedly, sounds rather hokey, forming a more grateful heart is not.

    This Sunday is the first Sunday in Advent and we will hear readings around thankfulness. 

    And we will contemplate the words of a famous author once said that everything is a gift. And the degree to which we are aware of this is a measure of our gratitude, as our gratitude is a measure of our aliveness.

    Let us make the year ahead one in which we are more thankful, and more alive. 
  • Apocalyptic Faith

    Apocalyptic Faith

     


    After seeing the latest Marvel comic book movie featuring an antihero character named Venom, my 12-year-old son tried to answer a question from his younger brother who asked, "Is Venom a good guy or a bad guy?"

    My son balked, thought about it, and finally said well, "He's a good guy who sometimes does bad things."

    And if we could carve into the hearts of all humanity this fundamental truth, living with its nuances and grace, we would be much farther along in the ball game.

    The fact that you and I swim in a sea brimming with financial and family worries, political turmoil, regrettable actions, dashed expectations, and missed opportunities, is not news.

    Nor are we unaware that we also swim alongside our best friends, valued possessions, generous charitable actions, altruistic attitudes, and stupendous accomplishments.

    And one of the challenges of this ongoing marathon swim is to keep these things in perspective, understanding that there are horrible things we endure, but by the grace of God we can make it.

    Not only are we good people who sometimes do bad things, but we battle our tendency to define ourselves by the worst things we've ever done or the worst experiences we've ever gone through.

    This Sunday in church, we will hear Jesus talk about a little bit about this. We Christians now approach the season in our liturgical calendars called Advent, which typically kicks off with prophetic and apocalyptic-style scripture readings that serve to warn us of life's brevity, the seriousness of the battles we face, and the victories that await us.

    Amidst this, the message is always one of encouragement and hope in the midst of our trials. No, we are not to be defined by our worst actions or traumas, but to embrace life in its entirety, knowing that the battle is long, but not impossible, taxing, but not fatal, and in the end God wins, love wins, and walking each day in that confidence of hope and joy is what it means to keep our eyes on Christ and to act in faith.

    Let's be good to ourselves and to others, we are fighting hard and important battles - life gets really really difficult, but let's keep our eyes on the prize, our feet grounded in faith, knowing that God will carry us through. 
  • All Saints Day Is Not About Saints

    All Saints Day Is Not About Saints

     


    When I was in grade school I was on the basketball team.

    Not because I was any good, but because we only had 18 people in my grade and I was the tallest one.

    After tryouts, our coach told who been chosen then handed out uniforms. They were bright green tank tops with gold satin shorts only the 1970's could have produced. Emblazoned across our shirts was the word Wildcats.

    Clearly what made me a Wildcat was not my ability to dribble or shoot, I have never been a very good basketball player. What made me a Wildcat was the coach's decision to pick me, give me a uniform, and use me: I was not the chooser, I was the chosen.

    As All Saints Sunday approaches, this story comes to mind.

    After all, the Bible calls all Christians saints. And while we are reticent to use that term when referring to ourselves, the Bible clearly says we are. And when we think about it, we are saints not because we call ourselves so, but because God does. Sainthood is not based on anything we've done, but on what God has done. We are saints because God says so.

    What makes us saints, then, is not our ability to act in a certain way, but God's ability to work through us in certain ways.

    Sainthood is not based on good behavior, but God’s behavior. 

    So when we call people saints, let’s think about it as a compliment to God. We're acknowledging God's grace to people and we're witnessing a miracle: that God uses meager souls like us to channel really good things into the world. 
    We’re acknowledging that we can do good really good things, like bring love, healing, forgiveness, and reconciliation into the world. 
    We’re acknowledging that saintly things that come from God, can come through us!

    Sure, All Saints Day is about acknowledging Christ's followers, but most of all, it's about acknowledging Christ. 
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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