is an extension
Bethlehem House Ministries,
a 501c3 nonprofit
"In a time when so many beliefs no longer serve us, and when so many structures that were supposed to preserve meaning and value have failed us, ritual itself holds meaning. A ritual is an outward, ceremonial act that expresses an inner, spiritual reality. The actions themselves connect us to what is true, to what endures, to the ways we are held by something larger than ourselves. We can trust a solid ritual, because it connects us to what we recognize as true at a level deeper than words."
The Importance of Rituals
Rituals motivate and move us. Through ritual we build families and community, we make transitions and mark significant events in our lives, we express ourselves in joy and sorrow, and perhaps, most importantly, we create and sustain identity. They come in every shape and color.
Your wedding day is something you will remember for the rest of your life, so it is important to make it special and unique to you. At Bethlehem House Ministries we work closely with you to ensure that your ceremony is exactly what you want. Be it a secular, religious, traditional or same-sex marriage, it is our aim to make sure your story and love are represented in the way that is important to you.
If you're looking for a simple, short & sweet, discreet or even an "at home" wedding, that can be arranged as well.
"... and they shall become one..."
~ Genesis 2:24
From the earliest days of Christianity, breaking open the Word and sharing in the banquet of Christ's Body and Blood was the source and summit of the Christian faith. Gathering in the domestic church of one's home for Eucharist is a special way to commemorate an important occasion such as a wedding anniversary, the anniversary of a loved one's passing or simply just sharing faith with the special people in your life.
“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.” ~ John 6:54
A house feels even more fully like home after a ritual cleansing and house blessing. A house blessing is an ancient tradition that invites positive energy into your home. Your home is an extension of your body and spirit. As you give to your home, you give to yourself. Your external space reflects and affects your inner life. As you purify and bless your home, lavish it with love. During a house blessing, you can imbue the space with love, health, peace and divine favor.
'Peace be to you, and peace be to your house, and peace be to all that you have.” ~ 1Samuel 25:26
Anointing of the sick has been and continues to be a customary practice in many civilizations. The use of oil for healing purposes is referred to in many writings as well as in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures. This anointing is NOT a magical ritual that promises perpetual and immediate healing, rather, it is a prayer of faith invoking the blessings and protection of the All-Holy upon a loved one who is sick and suffering.
"Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven."
~ James 5 : 14-15
Baptism is a ritualization of one's call to repent, turn away from selfishness and take on a life of service and love.
“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘… Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ ”
~ Matthew 28:19-20
SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION
It is good for us, from time to time, to voice our sinfulness. Sometimes we may feel bad (or guilty) and not sure about what God wants or thinks. An ordained minister is a voice speaking for Jesus Christ (our mediator to the Father). An ordained minister shows the compassion, gentleness and understanding of Jesus Christ. They give words of encouragement and words of advice -- words to strengthen the penitent. Sometimes it is good to hear a compassionate “human” voice, telling you of our Father’s mercy and forgiveness.
"After Jesus had said this, He breathed on His disciples and said to them, 'Receive the Holy Spirit.' If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven."
~ John 20:22-23
"Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed."
~ James 5:16
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to Himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their sins against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation...be reconciled to God."
~ 2 Corinthians 5:17-20
Prayer is a vital and fundamental part of Bethlehem House Ministries. We pray daily for all, especially those who are suffering and in need. Prayer definitely renews our sense of mission and offers inspiration for the work that we do each day. If there is something in your heart that you would like us to pray for, feel free to let us know about it by using the contact form below. Our team will gladly join with you in prayer.
"Ask, and it will be given you. Seek, and you shall find. Knock and the door shall be opened.”
~ Matthew 7:7-8
What is Spiritual Direction?
An individual meets with a certified spiritual director to discuss where God is present in the individual’s life. While spiritual direction may resemble a counseling session in some regards, it is not about “fixing” anything. Rather, it is attending to how God moves in your life, in good times and in bad. It allows the individual, called a “directee,” to choose how to respond to the Spirit’s invitation to fullness of life. A "director" offers gentle encouragement to open fully to God’s loving presence and to discern the action of the Spirit around and in you.
Spiritual Directors are dedicated to guiding / accompanying people in their spiritual journey and helping them deepen their relationship with the Divine. This is a practice found in many faith traditions.
"My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When can I go and meet with God?...Where is your God? Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me? I say to God my Rock, 'Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?' Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God."
~ Psalm 42
Philly4Good is an extension of
BETHLEHEM HOUSE MINISTRIES
...a space where bread is broken, companionship is celebrated, gratitude and kindness are embraced, and the love and mercy of God are shared with ALL!
Copyright © 2019 Philly4Good "Bethlehem House Ministries" a 501c3 Nonprofit Organization - All Rights Reserved.
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