David Epps's blog

Dr. Sam Brown and house calls

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Dr. Sam Brown was my family’s doctor when I was a boy. I remember him being a kindly man who smiled a lot, especially when dealing with fidgety kids. I don’t recall that I was ever panicked about going to see Dr. Brown as I was when I was going to the dentist.

When I was 7 years old, I was in my parent’s home in Kingsport, Tenn., and, strangely, everything seemed to go distant. My mother, in the kitchen, appeared to be a football field’s length away from me and my hearing became muffled. Apparently, I then passed out. Read More»

Memories of homesickness

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I was homesick for the very first time. Even though I had been at Parris Island, S.C., for several weeks undergoing the rigorous Marine Corps boot camp, now called “basic warrior training,” I had not had the time to think much about home.

At 19, I had not been away from home more than a day or so before enlisting. Now, it was approaching the two-month mark. Read More»

From slave to saint

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Imagine that you are, in the eyes of your superiors, inadequately educated, without the necessary social skills and political graces, in the later years of your life, and you have been given an assignment that falls to you only because the boss’s first choice died unexpectedly. No one expects you to succeed but a warm body must be thrown into the breach.

In this true story, the reason that the person in question was poorly educated was, quite literally, no fault of his own. Read More»

Pope Francis

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Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, of Buenos Aires, has been elected the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church, taking the name Pope Francis. He is the first Latin American pope to lead the church, as well as the first Jesuit priest.

Many believe that Pope Francis brings to the papal leadership a new feature of humility and boldness in spirituality. While archbishop in Argentina, he did not live in the archbishop’s palace but chose to live in a small room in a downtown Buenos Aires home, it has been reported. He also cooked his own meals and visited the poor in Argentine slums. Read More»

Jesus and his ol’ Lady

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At a meeting of the North American bishops and archbishops of our denomination in Orlando, Fla., recently, Archbishop Craig Bates of New York was sharing how some people say they love Jesus but loathe the Church. He said that he personally loved both Jesus and the Church. “In fact,” he said, “I don’t see how you can love Jesus and not love His ol’ Lady.” Read More»

My brother

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My brother had a heart attack a few weeks ago. It was totally unexpected and no warning signals were experienced.

My brother’s name is Wayne. Actually, it is Robert Wayne. For some reason both he and I have been called by our middle names all our lives.

My first name is William. I’m certain my parents had no idea the trouble they caused for us in a world where people are listed by their first name, middle initial, and last name. Read More»

'What are you doing now?'

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While visiting family in my Tennessee hometown a couple of decades ago, I decided to take my kids to lunch. I was standing in line in a fast food restaurant when I spotted someone in front of me who looked familiar.

“Margaret?” I said. The woman turned around, saw me, and said, “David!” It had been years since I had seen the person who was my very first high school love. We were an item for the entire freshman year.

After catching up a bit, she asked, “What are you doing now?” I replied that I was a pastor in Georgia. Read More»

This amazing technology

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Once in a while it dawns on me how much technology has changed things, even in the small things. The other day I was looking at the website for our diocese. Most of the news is generated from my office, although other churches and individuals in Georgia and Tennessee also contribute. We then send that information to a man in a small town in southeastern Tennessee who posts it on the website. From that point, the news goes ... everywhere. Read More»

The Gideon Bible in room 312

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I was in Petersburg, Va., making final preparations for a service of ordination that was to take place in just a couple of hours. I had driven to the hotel from my home in Georgia and was a bit weary as I was going through my sermon notes to make sure I had a decent, but not overly long, sermon.
I reached for my Bible and ... it wasn’t in my bag. I searched through the rest of my luggage and even went through the car. I had left it in Georgia. Read More»

Slavery, abortion, and the Supreme Court

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This past week marks the 40th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court decision, Row v. Wade. This year also marks the 156th anniversary of what is known by observers of the Supreme Court as the Dred Scott Decision. One decision has to do with abortion rights. The other clarified and expanded slave holder rights. The rationale of the Supreme Court of both 1857 and 1973 is eerily similar. Read More»

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