mike's blog

"This I Believe" by Michael K. Beard (Nov. 17 Sermon)

Over the years, there have been many rifts and divisions over important issues such as Revolution, Slavery, War, who could administer the Sacraments, Race Relations, and Women's rights to be ministers. And now the issue of equal treatment of all God's children. All have been debated at this very pulpit from various sides of the issue.

A Ceremony at Dumbarton Shows How Wrong the "Tradtional Plan: Is

Still Supporting LGBTQAI! Despite Methodist Division

(Reprinted from the Washington Blade)


By Michael Doan


The damage done by the United Methodist Church General Conference finally sank in for me when I saw two women renewing their wedding vows on their 15th anniversary last Sunday (March 3).  Not only were Jennifer Stapleton and Amy Stapleton expressing their love, they were nurturing their two small children, who were all dressed up for the ceremony.


Comparing 1971 and Now: By Virginia Lapham

I recently saw The Post movie and it brought back all the strong feelings and concerns about our democracy that led to organizing the eastern towns and villages of Westchester Co, NY in 1971 to support publishing of the Pentagon Papers and to oppose the Viet Nam war that was still taking the lives of 300 US soldiers and countless other lives every day. What worries me is that I started with a one paragraph notice in the local paper about a meeting at my house and 17 journalists, academics and other amazing leaders showed up.

Grace Abounds

By Mary Kay Totty The closest eatery to Dumbarton UMC was the Five Guys Burgers at the corner of Dumbarton and Wisconsin, a mere half block from the church. Five Guys was a favorite lunch spot for young adult Dumbartonians. Many a Sunday they wokuld wander over for a burger and soda. When the weather cooperated, they may bring their burgers back to the church steps for an impromptu picnic. I appreciate the hospitality these young adults extend to their pastor by always welcoming me to join them when my Sunday schedule permits.

The World Needs More Lace

laceBy Mary Kay Totty


I love to tat.

Tatting brings me joy and delight.

Tatting centers and grounds me.

And by tatting, I mean lace-making, not anything to do with tattoos.

Tatting is a form of lace-making using one basic double stitch to create patterns of rings and chain for edgings, doilies, jewelry. The world needs more lace.

The Year of Weddings

shoesBy the Rev. Mary Kay Totty

This has been a year of great weddings! I love these joyous occasions when friends and family gather from far and wide to celebrate the love and loyalty of two people. I have officiated or attended at least eight of these wonderful events this year. I want to share with you about four of these weddings.

Bringing Communion to the Capitol Steps

at Supreme CourtBy Mary Kay Totty    It was supposed to be my day off, but instead I brought communion to the steps of the Supreme Court. On June 26, most expected that the court's decision on marriage equality would not come until the following Monday.

Connecting with Our Past

In my early years at Dumbarton, I got the impression that modern, enlightened parishioners had replaced narrow-minded,  intolerant church goers in the 1960s and 1970s. My work on Dumbarton’s history project in 1992 convinced me that things weren’t that simple.


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