Rock SchulerRock Schuler is the Rector (Pastor) of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Olney, Maryland. He has served as an ordained minister of the Episcopal Church since 1990 after studying for the priesthood at Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois. He was awarded a Doctorate of Ministry in Congregational Development in 2002. In the course of his ministry, Rock has served on an Indian Reservation, in rural Wyoming, and in major suburban areas. In addition to pastoring the people of his congregation, he has been involved in community service projects to serve the homeless, refugees, and the addicted. He’s also been involved in international outreach projects in Latin America and Africa. Rock’s spiritual roots lie in the early Christian Church, in Native American spirituality, in the liturgical worship and traditions of the Episcopal Church, and most especially in his own personal relationship with the living Lord Jesus Christ. He appreciates the mystery and mysticism of the Christian faith while offering thanks for a lifelong and joyous love of Jesus. Rock, born in 1965, is from Wyoming, where he served his first two churches. He is married to Jennifer, whom he met while serving a parish outside of Philadelphia, and has two beautiful daughters, Leia and Rebecca. Rock is into science fiction and fantasy (especially "Battlestar Galactica," "Star Trek," "Lost," and "The Lord of the Rings"), movies, reading, kayaking/canoeing, hiking, and running.
Host: What is faith? Do you need it to pray?
Rock Schuler: Faith is a basic trust in God and in Gods goodness. Faith is to believe, to trust the God is working for our good. Faith is to, as Paul put it, trust that God is working all things together for good for those who love Him or as Julian of Norwich put it, faith is to believe that all things will be well. In other words, we believe, we trust that God has our goodness at heart and the God is actively working on our behalf. That trust, that belief carries us through even dark times when God's work on our behalf is not all that evident to us. That's what it is to trust, to have faith, to believe. We know that God is working on our behalf even when there is no rational reason to believe that, no visible evidence to believe that. That kind of faith, that kind of belief is not something that is really inherently an ability of the human being. In another words, we cant have that kind of faith on our own; we need God to give us that kind of faith. So faith is a gift from God, the trust the belief that God is working on our behalf that comes from God Himself. What we are asked to do is open our hearts, so that God can lead us into that kind of trust, to open our hearts to that kind of faith. Then we know that there is somebody in our corner, there is somebody looking out for our life, there is somebody working our circumstances toward an end goal that is for our good.