Tag Archives: St. James Presbyterian Church

Purple, not flowers, construction fence

IMG-6552I passed this fence on my way to St. James Presbyterian Church to a meeting with colleague and friend Derrick McQueen. It was on St. Nicholas between the 145th Subway Station and the church. Interesting that it was purple.

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Purple (artificial) flowers, St. James Presbyterian Church


2 November 2017
St. James Presbyterian Church
Harlem, New York

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Purple flowers, St. Nicholas Park


On my way to preach
at St. James Presbyterian Church,
this harbingers of Spring
rose to greet me
from the soil
of St. Nicholas Park.

4 March 2012
Harlem, New York

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A different route

As I went out last Sunday, to make my way unto St. James Presbyterian Church, I planned to use St. Nicholas Avenue. It is flat. I employed my usual walking plan – take what traffic and the stoplights give me.

After a couple of blocks, I realized that it would prove difficult to get to St. Nicholas Avenue. I had gone too far north; St. Nicholas Park lay between me and my preferred route. A choice lay before me. To minimize the uphill journey and see some new things, I chose to go through the park.

There I was surprised and pleased to see crocuses or croci or both. Going by a different route, may bring new opportunities, new delights. At least it did as I walked out last Sunday to make my way unto St. James.

See you along the Tail.

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Humble folk

St. James Presbyterian Church extended to me the privilege of preaching today. The congregation began their observance of Black History Month.

As I worked on the sermon, I thought of a prayer that I had remembered and included in the worship service for the Presbytery of New York City’s worship service celebrating the life, ministry, and witness of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The Rev. Dr. Otis Turner, one of my mentors, wrote the prayer. It reads in part:

We thank you for apostles, martyrs, leaders, and saints
And for humble folk whose names were never in the news.
But are recorded in your book of life.

God has blessed me. I have known many humble folk who have tirelessly pursued justice for all God’s children, loved courageously, and witnessed boldly. I know many who do so today. I give thanks to God.

See you along the trail.

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Hamilton Grange

After preaching at St. James Presbyterian Church, a true blessing, I walked a short way up 141st Street to visit my first National Park of the year. Historians believe that the Hamilton Grange National Memorial is the only home owned by Founding Father Alexander Hamilton.

The home has an interesting tale. It stands on its third site – having been moved twice as the city grew around it.  Hamilton owned the land.

The site involves a brief tour. Only a few rooms on the first floor are open to the public. There is an informative display and two movies. One tells the amazing story of moving the Grange. The second move involved the use of hydraulics and lifting – yes lifting – the building over the church beside it. The second tells the amazing story of Alexander Hamilton. It hooked me. I need to learn more.

From the Grange, I walked home through St. Nicholas Park and the City College of New York on a beautiful, cool January day.

See you along the Trail.

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Where are the Ribbons of Hope?

Simple ribbons.

Many colors.

Bright colors.

With words of

remembrance and

faith and

love and


Ribbons of Hope were made in New York and around the world as part of the observance of the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001. Ribbons were made at St. James Presbyterian Church on September 11, during a seminar with participants from the Presbytery of West Virginia, and at a chapel service at the Church Center for the United Nations.

Prepare New York reports that more than 20,000 people participated in Ribbons of Hope. The ribbons adorn 12 nine-foot panels. “These tapestries, where ribbons of different colors, textures, shapes and sizes can be found side-by-side, symbolize the strength and vibrancy of our diversity and serve as an important witness to peace and reconciliation. The plan is to continue to display them across the city throughout the full tenth anniversary year. They will travel each month from one prominent location to another. Ribbons will be added as they go, making this an expanding, interactive expression of community art.”

Moving, maintaining and organizing this project takes money; friends of Prepare New York can make a tax deductible gift of $25. Your gift will help keep this powerful symbol of hope and healing alive for a full year.  Your name will be added as a “friend” of Ribbons of Hope.

Did you add a ribbon to the Ribbons of Hope panels and want to know where your ribbon is now? Use Ribbons Map to track all the panels as they move from place to place. Find out where your ribbon has been and where it’s going next.

 See photos from the Ribbons of Hope weekend. Read Robert Chase’s recent blog: Reflections on Ribbons and 9/11.

Ribbons of Hope panels are scheduled to be at the chapel in the Church Center for the United Nations next week. Watch for pictures.

See you along the Trail.

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