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Angst and ire can’t be perpetual in today's climate

By J. Hogan

-Gains & Gleanings-

I care, just not about your politics. I mean, yeah, I do care during the runup to an election, and like you I think I’m right in the way I think about such matters… but I don’t really pay a whole lot of attention to it otherwise.

I run into my friend Al here and there and he mostly wants to talk about politics. We see things differently and he likes to provoke, let’s say, lively discussion over it. I’d rather hear about how his family’s doing and what kind of vacation plans they have for this year.

It’s not that I’m clueless about it, but my principles have had quite a long season to season and firm up, I don’t need to be in the constant tit and tat of it to know where I stand and I don’t care to be.

My dear friend W.L. McCoy’s wife Suzann succumbed to cancer a couple of days ago.

I care about that. I’m likely to be heading down to visit with him for several days soon.

The way he doted on his wife was a thing to behold, and an inspiration.

We had a great turnout this past Monday night for our call to Pray for Peace and it was powerful. I care about that.

The Greater Pittsburgh Area Food Bank just gave us 200 more boxes of food to give to folks in need through the Good News Place. I care about that.

I have a friend who has a house full of good furniture and appliances here in town that he’d like me to help put in the hands of folks in need. I care about that, and the logistics of it.

I’m investing in several men for leadership development at Faithbridge and coaching some pastors from around the region to help them with their mission. I care about that.

Teressa’s put up with me for three decades, and our 30th anniversary is next month… You can bet I care about that! Last year, two hours before we were scheduled to go out to dinner to celebrate our 29th, Gov. Wolf shut the state down, so I doubly care to make plans that can’t be trounced by edict this year. 30 years? The woman is a saint.

Some great things are happening with our kids. One just graduated college and another (shhh) looks to be ready to pop the question to his girlfriend.

I care about those things.

My dear friend Taris Vrcek released his first jazz album this past month and he’s already been getting radio airplay, first locally, then last weekend, around the nation.

You can check out the first two singles and the “Battle Scars” EP at

I care about that.

He’s also been blessing us at Faithbridge with his great musical gifts, which has been wonderful.

There’s a lot of worthy places to invest my concern and care these days. None of it, for me, sits in the realm of arguing about politics.

Rev. James Hogan is a native of Stowe Township and serves as pastor of Faithbridge Community Church in McKees Rocks.


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