We have asked all the nominees for moderator four questions so that we, as a church, could get to know them a little better. Here are the responses for Rev. Paul Reed. If you would like to know more about Paul, please read his profile from the General Council 41 website.
1) “Cruxifusion” means “united by the cross.” What does Jesus’ death on the cross and his resurrection mean to you?
As a child I came to know of Jesus through the Gospel Stories and children’s hymn, “Jesus loves me this i know…” It meant, and means, a great deal to me to know such love. The cross displayed a love that wasn’t just that of a “fair weather friend” but a love that was without end. My experience of the resurrected Jesus, the Christ, is the constant assurance of being lovable and worthy.
2) Describe the God you worship.
I don’t make great efforts to describe God. God is Holy Mystery that is experienced in so many ways. A nagging voice for rightness; the harmony of creation; the inspiration to care for the well being of the whole without the assertion of self interest. We can be aware of, and speak of, the presence of God, but we will never find words to adequately describe God.
3) Which Christian author has had the greatest impact on you?
Stories have the greatest impact on me. They rest with me until I am able to retell them. In time I’ll remember the stories but not the source. William Bausch’s collection in Storytelling: Imagination and Faith is a source I refer to often. I am more impacted by those I meet and hear, but when I meet and hear an author I am double blessed.
4) What gifts and passions do you have that you believe the United Church of Canada needs today?
One of the messages I share is that we are united, not because we have a common experience of Christ, but, because we have the experience of Christ in common. My role has often been to ensure that all voices, all points of view are heard. I firmly believe that we need to understand all sides of a story to have any chance of knowing the truth that leads us. As a church we need to speak with each other not over each other.