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.


Contact Details

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

  • +011 248-557-5430


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.


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.

U.S. Guns Produced Today
Americans Accidentally Killed Today
Homeless Americans
Weddings Performed
  • How to Be Successful

    How to Be Successful


    Warren Buffett's airplane pilot once asked for advice on how to be successful.

    Buffet, who started out in life with almost nothing, has become one of the 10 richest people in the world. And he told his pilot this: "If you want to be successful begin by writing out a list of 30 things you most want to accomplish in life, with the most important things first."

    So the pilot pulled out a piece of paper and made the list. At the top were things like owning his own charter plane business, being a good husband, a good father, and owning a second home. Farther down the list was becoming a good golfer, running a marathon every year, and opening a pizza place.

    The pilot then showed his list to Buffet who looked at it for a moment, then said, "Ok, now cross off the bottom 25 items on that list. You must realize that the primary impediment to reaching your most important goals, will come from those things you just crossed off. Get them out of your mind. Don't think about them again. They are not your friends."

    Realizing that things we love can have a shadow side is at the heart of this Sunday's Gospel when Jesus gives us some difficult words, "Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple."

    Jesus is trying to tell us how the things we love get in the way of the things we're supposed to do.

    There are few things I like to eat more than chocolate cake. Except when I'm on a diet. Then, I hate chocolate cake.

    And how true this is with our loved ones!

    When did your mom ever urge you to do something dangerous? How often does your family want you to do things that get you ridiculed, slandered, or make you unpopular? Yet accomplishing our goals, realizing our God-given dreams, giving birth to the purposes of our souls often means doing just that.

    Jesus is reminding us that the most important thing we do in life, following Him, requires focus, discipline, and commitment - every day.
    In what ways do we forget this?
    How are we letting other things get in the way?
    How is God calling us to cross off the things toward the bottom of our lists, and renew our commitment to the things at the top?
  • Everyone’s a Hypocrite! Except Me…

    Everyone’s a Hypocrite! Except Me…


    Why is it that Democrats are all over President Trump for taking Top Secret documents home with him - yet they don’t pay much attention to Hilary Clinton’s deleted emails, because they’re sure it was just a benign oversight?

    And why do Republicans keep bringing up Hilary’s e-mails - and accuse the FBI of fraud for raiding President Trump's home, because he couldn’t have possibly done anything wrong?

    It’s because we are far quicker to notice and call out hypocrisy when it goes against our own beliefs.

    We are not cold, logical, robots - psychologists say we all have self-serving biases - that we evaluate our own abilities, performance, and opinions, as better than others - and pass judgments on those who are different. 

    This often takes us down the road of hypocrisy, which can come out of a low self-esteem (we have to put others down to prop ourselves up), a desire to feel positive about ourselves, (that we’re good, decent, and capable people), or because we’re just plain lazy (putting someone down for not being generous means we have to be, which is not easy).

    On Sunday, our Gospel puts us face to face with hypocrisy - inviting us to explore our own biases - and temptations to call out others for things for which we may give ourselves a pass.

    Living honestly, transparently, whole-heartedly, and focused on Jesus means constantly evaluating ourselves for the ways we live by double-standards. Our goal as Christians is to love - to love authentically, honestly, and completely - which means understanding our own biases and shortcomings as ways that influence our views of others and the world.

    One of the best ways to love others is to look honestly at ourselves. May we have the strength and grace to do so. 
  • When Stress Is Good

    When Stress Is Good


    There's a new research study out that touts the benefits of stress.

    While there are many reasons to lessen stress in our lives and to seek release from anxiety, we are reminded that total freedom from worry is not only impossible, but unwanted.

    This study, done with Navy SEAL candidates, found that those who looked at stress, not as a mountain to be conquered or a foe to be vanquished, but as a positive motivator to do better, as a gift, or friend, to help us reach our highest potential, were much more likely to perform successfully on physical and mental tests. To quote one SEAL, “I look at these things as obstacles to overcome that will make it easier to overcome other, more important obstacles, that life will bring my way."

    This Sunday, you and I will hear Jesus talk about the stress-inducing aspects of being a disciple, when our faith costs us relationships and ambitions. It’s about the disruption that happens when fundamental change occurs. Instead of offering us relief from stress, urging us to lay our burdens on him, we are reminded that taking Jesus at his word will cause us stress, but that stress is not necessarily bad.

    Standing up to the bully, sticking up for the oppressed, pointing out the hypocrisy, and lifting up the truth: that love, forgiveness, and the pursuit of heavenly things trumps the pursuit of worldly things - these are all stressful things to do - and invite us to ask:

    In what ways are we being invited to take the uncomfortable and unpopular stance of standing up to a racist joke; Not denigrating an opponent; Or pushing back against peer pressure to compromise on honesty and forgiveness - believing that these are not obstacles and challenges, but practice for living more purposeful and productive lives — that if we can work our way through these challenges, we’ll be better prepared for the next ones that come our way?

    God is using us - and everything around us - to bring to earth a kingdom of peace and reconciliation - something in which we play irreplaceable roles. So let us not be discouraged by the stress it brings, but use it to make us better.
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    St. David's Episcopal Church, 16200 W. Twelve Mile Road, Southfield, MI 48076 USA



    +011 248-557-5430