Rev. Dr. Wayne Chasney
Pastor Wayne began his ministry at Monroeville in August, 1993, after graduating from Lancaster Theological Seminary in Lancaster, PA. Pastor Wayne has his Doctorate of Ministry from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary with a focus on ministry in the small church.
"The angel said to her, 'Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end." (Luke 1:30-32)
In his spare time, Pastor Wayne loves running, reading and cheering for the Minnesota Vikings.
Pastor Wayne is married to Rev. Wendy Schindler-Chasney, pastor of St. John's UCC, Milan. They have two daughters.
Do you remember when people running for political office would tell us how they were going to make the world better? Today it seems all they want to tell us is how the other person or party will make the world worse. But don't we all long for more? Don't we want a world that is better than it is today?
We long for a world where children don't have to be afraid to go to school.
We long for a world where the news isn't filled with stories of murders and violence.
We long for a world where people are safe and secure wherever they may live, whether here or someplace around the world; a world where everyone has enough to eat and clean water and the opportunity to take on meaningful work. We long for a better world.
Sometimes we think that means going back to some glorified past. We remember "the good old days" and think that's as good as it gets. We forget the struggles we faced. We forget the troubles others endured. The memory in our mind is far more glorious than what really was. We should want an even better world.
Welcome to the season of Advent. This is a season of longing; a season of hope. All the lights and decorations and candles in the windows are signs pointing us to that better world we long for. They lead us, and perhaps inspire us, to the kingdom Jesus came to proclaim and "reign over."
This is a kingdom where no one has to be afraid.
It is a kingdom without murder and violence.
It is a kingdom of plenty for all marked by peace, compassion, forgiveness.
It is the better world we long for and it is the kingdom of God.
Many believe Jesus came for nothing other than the forgiveness of sin, in particular, "my sin." That view is too narrow. Forgiveness is an attribute of God's kingdom - it is not the whole of God's kingdom. The kingdom of God which is about to come near again in Jesus is not just for ME - it is for US; it's not just becoming a better person - it's becoming a better world. It is Emmanuel, which means, "God is with US."
Welcome to the season of Advent. Welcome to this all-too-brief time of hope and good will and peace on earth. Welcome to a time to dream with the prophets what a better world can look like if, in the words of Trans Siberian Orchestra, "we could somehow make this Christmas thing last."
Welcome to Advent. Welcome to a better world.