Tom Bolton

Author's details

Name: Tom Bolton
Date registered: March 3, 2012

Latest posts

  1. Hopeful: Hallelujah — April 20, 2014
  2. Hopeful: Christ the Lord is Risen Today — April 20, 2014
  3. Hopeful: Happy Birthday June Jentz! — April 19, 2014
  4. Hopeful: Manskar: Atonement and the Methodist Way Conclusion — April 18, 2014
  5. Hopeful: Why is it Good Friday? — April 18, 2014

Most commented posts

  1. Hopeful: Voting like a Methodist — 1 comment

Author's posts listings

Apr 20 2014

Hopeful: Hallelujah

Original post at

He is Risen!


Another great music video for Easter

Tagged: Easter, Hallelujah

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Apr 20 2014

Hopeful: Christ the Lord is Risen Today

Original post at

He Is Risen!

I’m looking forward to Sunrise Service today.

Tagged: Easter, Wesley

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Apr 19 2014

Hopeful: Happy Birthday June Jentz!

Original post at


Today we are celebrating the 80th birthday of June Jentz, my mother-in law.  Happy birthday!

Mother June, Sister June

Of mothers lost and mothers found,
and love learned and lived,
I found mother June in my life.
In decades past, and in days recent,
she took me in her house just as I am
a wanderer, a drifter, a disciple.
When I was single, alone, and coughing in fever,
she put me up, put up with me,
and fed me just as I was.
She has connected us with the saints in our times, reluctant but
stable and solid in good times and hard times,
and connects the times through ages known.

A sister of sisters and mother of daughters,
she gathered in sons, husbands of daughters,
and a husband, she held, a best friend forever.
She has been a hostess of families, friends and clans,
a center of the table, ready or not, and
a center of the living room, energized and when worn down.
She remembers us and loves us,
even when we are unsure of ourselves.
She lifts us up and knows us,
even when we question our lives and our place.
With Paul, she partners to complete the team,
to make the home, the central place in sacred life.
With daughters, grandsons, granddaughter, and new
she seized the days and lives the life.
She is blessed to be a blessing to a family of families.
She is blessed to bless our community,
communities grown over years old and new.
She hems our hems,
Hears our harrumphs,
Heals our hurts,
and does the things we forget to see;
she does these things with quiet dignity.
She lives her life, a model, a special one.
She has been a daughter, a wife, a mother,
Grandma June,
and always a wonder-filled Wisconsin woman.
In the center,
on a special day,
we lift June to celebrate her day.
Happy birthday, Sister June, Mother June.
Bless you on your blessed day.

(c) Tom Bolton, from Milwaukee, 19 April 2014


I am always thankful that my mother-in-law and father-in-law have adopted me as their son in so many ways.  On the event of her 80th birthday this month, I was thinking about June Jentz, my mother-in-law.  I am sharing this poem with her today.  June is a very special woman.

This awesome video history was created by my Sister-in-Law Barb Hoeft.

Related Article
Brother Paul, Father Paul

Tagged: Birhday, June Jentz

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Apr 18 2014

Hopeful: Manskar: Atonement and the Methodist Way Conclusion

Original post at

Manskar: Atonement and the Methodist Way Conclusion

I’ve been sharing links to Rev. Steven Manskar’s series on Atonement and the Methodist Way.  He concluded his series with a great description of modern groups in the Wesleyan tradition yesterday.  I want to share that post with my readers.  You can read the full post from Manskar by clicking on the hyperlink above.

He includes this material there:

Today we have a contemporary model of the class meeting in CovenantDali CrucifixionDiscipleship groups. A group consists of 5-7 people who are willing to be accountable for their discipleship. They agree to meet weekly for one hour. The group’s life is shaped by the General Rule of Discipleship:

To witness to Jesus Christ in the world, and to follow his teachings through acts of compassion, justice, worship, and devotion under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

He concludes:

The Wesleyan way of Christian formation provides a simple and practical way to respond to God’s love revealed in the death of his Son. It provides the means to form relationships of mutual support and accountability people need to deny themselves, take up their cross daily and follow Jesus. The call to discipleship is a call to live with the cross. It is a call to relationship with the Triune God. The Wesleyan way helps us know and love God by joining with others like us. God comes to us and we grow in knowledge and love of God through relationships with others who seek to “deny themselves, take up their cross daily, and follow Jesus” (Luke 9:23). This reality tells me that Christian faith and life is necessarily relational. Christ comes to me through the lives, witness and love of other people.

Jesus shows us that his way is the relational way. He shows us how to love:

“If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”

As always, I recommend Manskar’s blog to my readers.

Tagged: Atonement, Manskar, Methodist

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Apr 18 2014

Hopeful: Why is it Good Friday?

Original post at

English: Jesus Christ - detail from Deesis mos...

It may be a corruption of “God’s Friday,” as noted in this link from the Global Board of Discipleship website.

Here are some key points from that article:

The source of our term for the Friday before Easter, “Good Friday,” is not clear. It may be a cross corruption of the English phrase “God’s Friday,” according to Professor Laurence Hull Stookey in Calendar: Christ’s Time for the Church(p. 96). It is the common name for the day among English- and Dutch-speaking people. It is a day that proclaims God’s purpose of loving and redeeming the world through the cross of our Lord, Jesus Christ. It is a day that is good because God was drawing the world to God’s self in Christ. As seen in John’s gospel, particularly, God was in control. God was not making the best of a bad situation, but was working out God’s intention for the world — winning salvation for all people. We call it “good” because we look backward at the crucifixion through the lens of Easter!

“Good Friday” is not a universal name for the day. The liturgical title for the day in the Western church was “Friday of Preparation,” since the time Jews used the word paraskeue (getting ready) for Friday, meaning the “day of preparation.” Popular names for the day are “Holy Friday” among the Latin nations, “Great Friday” among the Slavic peoples, “Friday of Mourning” in Germany, “Long Friday” in Norway, and “Holy Friday” (Viernes Santo) among Hispanic peoples.

I’m glad to repeat this from last year on Good  Friday.

Tagged: Good Friday

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Apr 17 2014

Hopeful: Found

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I’m contemplating Romans 8:28.


                    Found Again

Known to be lost, and never quite known as I was,
the true nature of Christ brings me where I am meant to be.
I have seen in this exploration the fuzziness and cracks of
my image, the who I am.
When I was just eight, I saw myself lost,
and cried into my sleep, seeking to escape my lost world.
For more years, I lived there alone.
My life lost is found, never quite lost,
but cleansed and repurposed by Christ.
In places lost, I am found, and
trying to escape, I am brought home, and
in nightmares defeated, I am awakened anew.
In lessons lost, and in decisions wasted,
I am yet redeemed and found new,
fresh in His fine-woven fabric, in this
glorious life,
found new,
redeemed by grace.

(c) Tom Bolton, Milwaukee, 15 April 2014

Tagged: Grace, Romans 8:28

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