About Matthew Martin Nickoloff

If there are a "chosen few" then I am not one of them, if an "elect" well then I have not been elected. I am one who is knocking at the door. I am one whose foot is on the bottom rung. But I know that Heaven's bottom rung is Heaven though the ladder is standing where I work by day and at night sleep with my head on a stone. -Wendell Berry No one ever told us we had to study our lives, make of our lives a study, as if learning natural history music, that we should begin with the simple exercises first and slowly go on trying the hard ones, practicing till strength and accuracy became one with the daring to leap into transcendence, take the chance of breaking down the wild arpeggio or faulting the full sentence of the fugue. And in fact we can’t live like that: we take on everything at once before we’ve even begun to read or mark time, we’re forced to begin in the midst of the hard movement, the one already sounding as we are born. Everything else seems beyond us, we aren’t ready for it, nothing that was said is true for us, caught naked in the argument, the counterpoint, trying to sightread what our fingers can’t keep up with, learn by heart what we can’t even read. And yet it is this we were born to. We aren’t virtuosi or child prodigies, there are no prodigies in this realm, only a half-blind, stubborn cleaving to the timbre, the tones of what we are, even when all the texts describe it differently. And we’re not performers, like Liszt, competing against the world for speed and brilliance (the 79-year-old pianist said, when I asked her What makes a virtuoso?—Competitiveness.) The longer I live the more I mistrust theatricality, the false glamour cast by performance, the more I know its poverty beside the truths we are salvaging from the splitting-open of our lives The woman who sits watching, listening, eyes moving in the darkness is reheasing in her body, hearing-out in her blood a score touched off in her perhaps by some words, a few chords, from the stage, a tale only she can tell. -Adrienne Rich

Autumn Series: “Learning to Read the Bible: Old Testament”


AUTUMN SERIES: “Learning the Read the Bible: Old Testament”
11390009_10100504694504972_5274711880261945691_nSWM strives to be a “School for Life,” a place where we are always engaged in the life-long process of learning: learning to be with God, learning to be with each other, and learning to be in the world.

This Autumn, we’ll turn our attention to “Learning to Read the Bible,” specifically, the Old Testament, sometimes referred to as the Hebrew Scriptures.  We’ll use the Narrative Lectionary during Sunday liturgy, which takes us through the biblical narrative chronologically.  From September until Christmas, if you were to attend every Sunday, you will have read and engaged the major turns in the story of the Old Testament.

In addition, we are blessed to have Professor Mark Brummit of Colgate Rochester Crozier Divinity School to help guide us.  Once a month, in place of our regular worship service SWM will hold a special Supper Liturgy Lecture, in which Prof Brummit will introduce an issue related to the challenges of reading the OT, and then lead a conversation with the gathered community over supper.

Learn more about Mark Brummit here.

Dinner Lecture dates are:

Sept 27th
Oct 25th
Nov 22nd