Showing posts from 2015

Year End Movie Reviews, Top 10 of 2015, and a Word of Thanks

Before December ends in a few hours, I wanted to squeeze in one last blogpost on movies. I’ll offer a few short reviews of movies Christy and I saw on our annual 48 hour date in Houston over Christmas break. Then I’ll offer my top-10 of movies 2015.
First, a word of thanks to everyone who read, commented on, shared with others, and generally appreciated my Advent snowglobes series. My mother has given me a snowglobe every Christmas since I was in high school-- 30 years now. I had the idea of posting pictures and a reflection every day during Advent last January as I was packing up my snowglobes for another year. Here's the proof-- I left myself a note:

It was a real labor of love. Some days I wrote early in the morning, others later. Some posts were more popular than others by a wide margin. Many people shared the posts on Facebook with their friends. I've had the idea of self-publishing the pictures and reflections into an Advent devotional book-- this is a much better alter…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 26)

(I forgot to post this last week!)

One of the leading technology companies has a great tag line: "The next big thing is here." It evokes excitement: What will this phone/tablet do that last year's, or last month's, won't do?" Which really sums up the anxiety and the constant change of the world in which we live. We get used to one thing, or way of doing something, then it becomes obsolete. Into our constantly changing and evolving world the Christ Child is born. The Book of Hebrews says, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." These boys, a part of my collection for nearly twenty years, sing "O Holy Night." The wonder of this most holiest of nights was foretold centuries before the birth at Bethlehem: "For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His authority shall grow continually, and …

Advent Snowglobes (Day 25)

Christmas 1988- my senior year in high school. Like yesterday's snowglobe, it plays "We Three Kings" (they walk outside of the glass). But I want to focus on Mary today. She was, like me in '88, a teenager. I was dreaming of amassing tremendous wealth on Wall Street (God has a sense of humor); who knows what her goals were. But when the angel intervened and announced new plans, she did not protest: "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, for he has looked with favour on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; 
for the Mighty One has done great things for me,and holy is his name. His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. 
He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; 
he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 24)

From 2009, "We Three Kings." If you listen closely you'll hear Linus (8) singing along. We do not know where these visitors came from- but it was a long journey; they "traverse afar." The Micah text for today speaks of folk from "many nations" visiting God's house to learn God's ways. Why? To learn the ways of peace: "In days to come the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised up above the hills. Peoples shall stream to it, and many nations shall come and say: ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob;
that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.’ For out of Zion shall go forth instruction, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between many peoples, and shall arbitrate between strong nations far away; they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; nation shall not…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 23)

This snowglobe was given to me in 2004. It plays "Away in a Manger," one of my favorite Christmas hymns- especially the last two verses: "Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay
Close by me forever, and love me, I pray. Bless all the dear children in thy tender care, And take us to heaven, to live with Thee there." Today is 21 December, the winter solstice, the longest night of the year. It's a day to be mindful of those who are hurting near Christmas- those who plead with the Child to be near and remain with them in their pain. Along the base of the snowglobe are these words: "Christ's birth brought God's love song to earth." So on this longest night, may you feel God's love song playing just for you. If you are aware of others' pain, bless them with your love.

Advent Snowglobes (Day 22)

"Big things come in small packages," folk are fond of saying around Christmas. Advertisers hope we think of expensive trinkets to buy. But not today. This is my smallest snowglobe- a tiny Frosty. It's about as tall as my thumb. I'm thinking about underdogs today because this morning's readings lift up an elderly woman, Elizabeth, pregnant with John the Baptizer; an unmarried, pregnant teenager, Mary the mother of Jesus (both Luke 1); and the small town of Bethlehem (Micah 5). The only interesting thing to come out of Bethlehem was King David; but Jesus would be born there too. Unexpected, surprising places and voices proclaim the coming King of kings. The writer of Psalm 80 pleas for God to take notice of us: "Give ear! Save us! Let your face shine, that we may be saved!" (verses 1-3,7). As you long for God to show up in your life, look in the small places. Listen to the voices that go unheard. Look among the outsiders: the hurting, the hungry, the lost…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 21)

(From yesterday.)

"Before she was in labour she gave birth; before her pain came upon her she delivered a son. 
Who has heard of such a thing?
Who has seen such things?
Shall a land be born in one day?
Shall a nation be delivered in one moment?
Yet as soon as Zion was in labour
she delivered her children.
Shall I open the womb and not deliver? says the Lord;
shall I, the one who delivers, shut the womb? says your God.
Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her, all you who love her;
rejoice with her in joy,
all you who mourn over her—
that you may nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast;
that you may drink deeply with delight from her glorious bosom (Isaiah 66:7-11).

Star Wars Reactions-- The Morning After

(This poster once graced my office door; it's now in my garage, because it was too distracting. But it was perfect for a time, because my love of Star Wars will always be tied to my name.)

(Don't worry; no spoilers here.)
OK, so The Force Awakens is being universally praised, and rightly so. On it's currently rated 8.9, ahead of The Empire Strikes Back(8.8) and A New Hope (8.7). Hey, if it has that high of a rating after 30+ years great; but for me nothing will ever exceed Empire. By contrast, Return of the Jediis an 8.4, and the highest of the prequels' scores was 7.7. I've been tweeting fairly regularly about the new movie over the last week-- everything from counting down the hours to the possible weather forecast (we had no snow).
Popular question: "If you could meet someone famous, who, and what would you talk about?" Stephen Colbert & #TheForceAwakens@StephenAtHome — Frank Drenner III (@revfrankdrenner) December 18, 2015

78 HOURS! I…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 20)

Three years ago Mom and Dad gave the whole family an amazing gift: All twelve of us, including the six grandsons, went to Disney. By the end of it many of the adults were ready to kill each other, but the boys had a great time- they still talk about it all the time. Family is a gift, although they are at times difficult, frustrating, even maddening. The Church ought to be a family too; for many it's the most healthy and supportive family they have. "But recall those earlier days when, after you had been enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, sometimes being publicly exposed to abuse and persecution, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. For you had compassion for those who were in prison, and you cheerfully accepted the plundering of your possessions, knowing that you yourselves possessed something better and more lasting. Do not, therefore, abandon that confidence of yours; it brings a great reward. For you need endurance, so that when you ha…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 19)

(I was a little too distracted yesterday.)

What you expected something clever and profound today?? Not going to happen! This Yoda Claus was given to me in 2007. For some strange reason it plays "Let It Snow," rather than STAR WARS music. I could fill this post with Yoda-isms and stretch it to Advent, but no. It's enough to jut share this beautiful Jeremiah text, which is God speaking directly to us, eight days before Christmas: "The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my peopl…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 18)

This is a Norman Rockwell scene. Santa is writing in his book. I don't know what he is recording: is this his naughty/nice list, or is he checking off completed projects from his workshop? His handwriting is worse than mine, so it is impossible to tell. At any rate, sometimes things do not go our way. We end up on the naughty list. We find coal in our stocking. Or we do not receive the gift we most wanted at Christmas. Or things turn much more serious for us: mourning the absence of a loved one at Christmas, a challenging medical diagnosis, loss of a job, uncertainty about the future. Given the rash of violence we see in our country and around the world, we worry about the safety of our loved ones. "God's plan" is a nebulous cliche folk like to offer as a response to whatever bad news we hear. God may, or may not, have every single detail of your life spelled out like Santa's book here. But we know there is an ultimate plan for all of humanity-- even the world--…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 17)

The angel marvels at the Child in this snowglobe, which plays, "Jesus Loves Me" (note the cherubs around the base). This is unusual music for a Nativity scene, but coupled with the Isaiah text for the day, everything comes together: the Child, who loves us, is the hope of the world. "A shoot shall come out from the stock of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the Lord shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. His delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt around his waist, and faithfulness the belt around his loins. The wolf shall live wi…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 16)

This is one of my oldest snowglobes, although it is not dated. Over the years about half of the water has leaked somehow, which is probably a relief to St Nicholas.  You may have seen his many memes floating around Facebook. Nicholas lived in the fourth century. He was bishop of Myra in modern day Turkey. He was a staunch defender of Christian Orthodoxy and even was one of the bishops to sign the Nicene Creed. Nicholas died December 6, 343. December 6 was set aside by the Church as a feast day for St Nicholas.

One of my favorite texts is assigned for today, and I immediately thought of St Nicholas and this snowglobe when I read it: 

Remember your leaders, those who spoke the word of God to you; consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings; for it is well for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by regulations about food, which have not benefite…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 15)

Today is the third Sunday of Advent. Originally Advent was a parallel of Lent- a seven week time of preparation, but for Christmas, not Easter. The middle Sunday of the season was meant to be a sort of lighter day, maybe a day of rest from the spiritual preparing. Advent was reduced to four weeks in time, but still, halfway through, we come to Gaudete (Latin: "Rejoice!") Sunday. Most churches light a pink, rather than purple, candle on the Advent wreath. The texts for the day speak of joy, and none better than this: "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:4-7). I chose this guy because as he skates his smile exudes joy. And may it be so…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 14)

(Posted to Facebook and Instagram December 12.)

This Frosty was given to me in 2001, and over time, obviously, he has undergone changes! Gone is the gentle, comforting music and the graceful dancing of a snowman. That's been replaced with the frenetic music and spinning he now offers. Two thoughts today: 1. Does your Advent/Christmas season feel like this too? So busy and fast that everything just blows past? 2. Frosty is wearing sunglasses, which reminds me of this awful Spring-like weather we've had this week. Even the word SNOW SNOW SNOW is repeated all the way around the base of the snowglobe! Thankfully, changes are coming tonight and winter will return. At any rate, even Frosty's light-speed rate, hear these words of promised renewal: "The time is surely coming, says the Lord, when the one who ploughs shall overtake the one who reaps, and the treader of grapes the one who sows the seed; the mountains shall drip sweet wine, and all the hills shall flow with it. I …

Advent Snowglobes (Day 13)

I had an idea for a different snowglobe today, but on a quick trip to the grocery store I heard "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" TWICE. One was Barry Manilow's Vegas lounge act rendition, the other by Gene Autry. It's difficult to imagine two more different interpretations! Both of them gave their best effort. Rudolph also had a unique gift- his red lamp of a nose- and helped Santa deliver his presents. And then this text is assigned for today: "This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable g…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 12)

I received this snowglobe in 1995. It is one of my largest, and it plays, "Deck the Halls"- which you might have guessed, since Dad is decorating the tree. It's a very idyllic setting, isn't it? "Deck the Halls" is a carol, not a hymn. It speaks of being jolly, dressing in fun clothes, etc. No mention of the Nativity or anything Christians associate with Christmas. And I am ok with that. I don't participate in the "war on Christmas" rhetoric we hear every year. Christmas is a season for everyone, not just Christians. Don't you think the world needs a little jolly and falalalala now? Today, try to spread some holiday cheer to folk outside of your church circle. Instead of trying to protect Christmas somehow, spread its joy to those the Church is not reaching. “Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted. Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things;let…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 11)

You know this story: The Grinch hates Christmas. Every year it's worse: the singing. The laughter. The joy. So he decides to steal everyone's Christmas- the entire town. He steals gifts, trees, food, anything he can get his green hands on. Then on Christmas morning he leans out from his mountaintop perch, stretches out his ears, excited to hear the screams of the townsfolk. Instead he hears... Singing. Joy. Laughter. Even without all the stuff- Christmas still comes. The truth of the season changes the Grinch from monster to hero, as he joyfully descends the mountain and delivers the gifts and food and decorations. He is forgiven and invited to join in the celebration. This morning I am thinking about transformation. All of the assigned readings for today speak of change brought about by God's grace and power: fear to hope, blindness to sight, hungry to fed, lost to found, death to life. "Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with f…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 10)

Only the Holy Family is included in this snowglobe- no visitors or animals. I think of the episode immediately following the visit of the Magi (Matthew 2:13-23), when they must flee the wrath of Herod and seek refuge in Egypt. This is, without a doubt, the most ignored and unknown element of the Nativity story- and incredibly relevant for today. Jesus, Joseph, and Mary were forced to leave their homeland to escape persecution and certain death. 12 million people are currently fleeing the wrath of modern day Herods, from Assad to ISIS, but many have found other countries less than hospitable. Devout Christians, who may disagree on a host of other issues, have been unanimous: We must welcome the stranger. It is one of the most frequent of the commandments in the Bible. Today, remember the plight of refugees worldwide- and that Jesus was once one himself. "When they cry out to the Lord because of their oppressors, he will send them a savior and defender, and he will rescue them"…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 9)

I was just rolling through Twitter when I saw a reference to something called the Moose Test. And I immediately thought of this snowglobe, given to me just two years ago. The Moose Test is an emergency avoidance maneuver in driving. The theory goes: a moose in the middle of the road will not see you and turn and run away. It will continue to walk in the same direction, and braking won't always help you avoid it (or whatever obstacle is there). So the driver must swerve around the object (not into oncoming traffic,
please) then keep going. The car will roll over if it fails the test. Now, this moose poses no danger to anyone. But as we prepare ourselves for Christ's coming, maybe it'll do good to consider what obstacles block his way, and how to clear them- without hurting others. Joy will result: "Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, 'The Lord has done great things for them.' The Lord has done …

Advent Snowglobes (Day 8)

Advent is about hope. Hope may be the most spoken word in churches every Sunday in December! Mom gave me this snowglobe (more like a confetti-globe) in 2002. It's the Ballpark in Arlington, home of the Texas Rangers. Of course, it plays, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." The Rangers were close to winning it all in 2010 and 2011, and they had a great year in 2015. Every Spring, every team begins training for the new season, and hope is a common theme. I'm fairly sure God doesn't care which team wins, but if God has a favorite sport, it has to be baseball, right? "I am the Lord, and I do not change; and you, children of Jacob, have not perished" (Malachi 3:6). In other words, there is always... you guessed it: hope. What do you hope for?

Advent Snowglobes (Day 7)

I spent most of yesterday hauling ‪#‎Christmas‬ decorations from the garage, including all 37 snowglobes. Mom started giving me a snowglobe every Christmas when I was in high school, and has continued the tradition for 30 years. This one is not dated- but I know it is one of the oldest. It plays "Jingle Bells," and despite its age it's one of the best sounding of the collection. Seeing it and other artifacts in the garage (see social media posts from yesterday) filled me with nostalgia for the great days of my youth. The 80s in small town Texas was a great time to grow up- great friends, awesome music and movies. On our cross country trek a couple of weeks ago I was glued to Sirius' Big 80s channel. I've felt a little homesick recently for that era. Then I read a couple of texts assigned for today and I was jolted back to 2015: "'But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic li…

Advent Snowglobes (Day 6)

(Posted yesterday, December 5.)

This snowglobe is broken. Frosty's torso is unattached, and there is a large hole in the glass (no water and snow inside). It also no longer plays music. It's a reminder that many folk experience brokenness at ‪#‎Christmas‬- I'm thinking of a woman at church whose husband died a couple of months ago. It's a common practice for churches to offer special services for the grieving- Custer Road's is Dec 20 at 6:30 pm. May the hurting know "... the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace" (Luke 1:78-79).

Advent Snowglobes (Day 5)

Mom gave this cheerful snow angel to me in 1999, when Christy and I lived in England. He sort of reminds me of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man with wings. But the truth is: I don't feel cheerful today. More tragic shootings yesterday, more bombings overseas, violence creates more violence. We want to be tough and strong, but the truth is we are weak- and the strength we need does not come from us. We have become too accepting of death as an unfortunate way of life. More war, more guns, more hateful speech gets us nowhere. In the Bible, angels, which may or may not look like this one, are heralds/messengers. Heralding the coming of Christ, the first words they speak to terrified shepherds and a teenaged girl are, "Do not be afraid." Inscribed on the bottom of the globe, this angel says, "Follow your star." Maybe that's where his smile comes from- knowing the Star leads us, as it did the Wise Men, to the very Source of comfort and joy we seek.

Advent Snowglobes (Day 4)

I received today's snowglobe in 2000. Since my childhood I have been a huge fan of Charlie Brown- and if you haven't seen the new PEANUTS movie you should! Jesus often spoke of welcoming children and hearing the gospel as children. Regardless of our age, Advent is a time of growth- we all have space to learn and experience more about what it means to be faithful. The apostle Paul encourages further growth from the church: "I'm sure about this: the one who started a good work in you will stay with you to compete the job by the day of Christ Jesus. This is my prayer: that your love might become more rich with knowledge and all kinds of insight" (Philippians 1:6,9).

Advent Snowglobes (Day 3)

Today is World AIDS Day. According to the United Methodist Committee on Relief, there are 34 million people living with HIV/AIDS, 2/3 of whom live in Sub Saharan Africa (1.1 million in the US). In 2011, 1.7 million people died AIDS-related deaths around the world. These angels with heads bowed remind us of the importance of prayer for those who suffer- a key element of the Season of Advent. "Lord, you have been our help, generation after generation. Before the mountains were born, before you birthed the earth and the inhabited world- from forever in the past to forever in the future, you are God" (Psalm 90:1-2).

Advent Snowglobes (Day 2)

This snowglobe was given to me in 2000. What I love about it is how the snowman is reaching for the star. Advent is a time of reaching. Christians do not reach for things (hey today is CyberMonday), but we reach for hope. For love. For peace and joy. "The Lord isn't slow to keep his promise, as some think of slowness, but he is patient toward you, not wanting anyone to perish but all to change their hearts and lives" (2 Peter 3:9). On this second day of Advent, what could you change about your own life to make that star a little closer to your reach? ‪#‎advent‬‪#‎day2‬‪#‎snowglobe‬‪#‎snowman‬‪#‎keepreaching‬‪#‎christmas‬

Advent Snowglobe Devotions-- Day 1

My mom has given me a snowglobe at Christmas every year since I was in high school. Today (Nov 29) was the first Sunday of Advent. My goal is to post a picture and reflection every day until Christmas. I received this one in 1989, my senior year. It once had a light in the steeple. It does not play music, and the church has become detached from its base. Like the church in the snowglobe, at times the Church around the world sometimes seems detached from both its audience and its Lord. In the current climate, where more and more folk self-identify with no religious preference, the gospel message is still vital. This is from today's epistle lesson- it speaks to our purpose: "May the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all" (1 Thessalonians 3:12).

Veteran's Day

Veteran's Day has a special place in my heart, and not because I ever served in the military (I did flirt with the idea of serving as a chaplain once or twice). So many men who have impacted my life served in the United States Navy: both grandfathers, my dad, and his brother, my Uncle Donald. I have two cousins currently serving (Army and Air Force). Very proud and thankful for all of them-- and everyone who has served.

Yesterday I did a little research into the observance: Originally Armistice Day, first observed in 1919 to commemorate the end of WWI (November 11, 1918). My maternal great grandfather served in the cavalry in WWI Mema still has his saddle in her garage somewhereChanged to Veteran's Day in 1954 with three emphases:remember those who fought and diedto commemorate the service of veterans of all warspromote an enduring peace
And then I found this litany online, which sums up well the three purposes of the day (Presbyterian Church, USA): A Litany for Veterans  The R…


We had a pretty great weekend at La Casa Drenner. Celebrating Christy's victory over the CPA exams Friday night we enjoyed dinner at Roma's, our favorite family pizza joint in Dallas (we were going to watch SMU play Temple but the rain washed us out). Saturday we journeyed to Alamo to watch The Peanuts Moviewith the boyos (it's great!). Then we dumped them at home and went out for a date night: dinner at her favorite place, Whiskey Cake, followed by the new James Bond movie, Spectre.

I've been very excited about this movie for several reasons:

I am a lifelong Bond fan. My favorites: Goldfinger, From Russia With Love, For Your Eyes Only, License to KillGoldeneye(also a great video game on the ol' Nintendo 64!), Casino Royale2012's Skyfall may be the best Bond movie ever.So this was building on greatness and adding the greatest actor of our time, Christoph Waltz as the villain Blofeld.It's a November release, meaning the closer it gets to us the closer I am…

The Birth of the Messiah study

Last year during the Season of Lent I led a study called The Death of the Messiah. We explored the Passion of Jesus in great detail- both the stories from the Bible and classical depictions in Christian art. It was a great class and well attended. So this winter I will offer a companion study: The Birth of the Messiah.

Info & registration link for a new study I will offer @CusterRoadUMC this December: — Frank Drenner III (@revfrankdrenner) November 3, 2015

We will explore the nativity traditions of the Bible: wise men and the star, shepherds and angels, Bethlehem, Mary, Joseph. We'll also explore the stories of Jesus' birth as it has been expressed through art- one painting each week. 
During Lent we offered the class on Wednesdays, but for Advent it will occur on Sundays to invite more to participate, including choir members. Here's the link to register:
The Birth …

What Do You Want Me To Do For You?

Note: if you attended Lectioworship at Custer Road last weekend, some of this material was shared in the sermon so it will be familiar.
I spent last week at the annual North Texas Conference clergy retreat at Lake Texoma. We focused on building a sustainable ministry for the long haul. Our presenters challenged and inspired us to combat burnout, be leaders in a biblical, as opposed to a worldly, way, and remember that we are called of God to this work. It was very good stuff for clergy, but I also think there were helpful tips for layfolk.
George Mason, senior pastor at Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, shared some ministry lessons he has learned in his nearly 30 years in that church. He started by remembering his calling to the ministry. He was a quarterback at the University of Miami—as he said, back when they were no good—he was the last poor quarterback to play there. While he was in school he was very active in his church, and his pastor often wondered if George was called to min…