Category Archive for: ‘sermons’

“Whatever is true…”- Exodus 32:1-14, Philippians 4:1-9– Oct. 15, 2017

He’d been gone for a very long time–40 days at least, up there on the mountain, with smoke billowing and thunder rumbling, the occasional lightning flash. They had actually sent him up there by himself, after they’d gotten a taste of the power and terror of God’s presence in their midst. “You go talk to talk to God and tell …

“The Lease Is Up!”- Isaiah 5:1-7, Matthew21:33-46– Oct. 8, 2017

The General Minister of the United Church of Christ, the Rev. John Dorhauer, posted this on Facebook Monday morning– I am fast losing the capacity to mourn all that we must mourn. Charlottesville becomes Houston becomes Florida becomes Puerto Rico becomes Las Vegas. Every lost life is a name, a history, a hope, a story – an unfulfilled future. Every …

“Empty to Become Full”– Philippians 2: 1-13–October 2, 2017

On this Sunday when we are reminded that, despite all our divisions, Christians throughout the world all share the Sacrament of Communion, I’d like you to hold in your mind and heart the image of an empty cup, a chalice if you will, maybe like this chalice which our daughter Meredith made in high school. This big chalice is even …

“Scandalous Grace” -Exodus 16:2-15 , Matthew 20:1-16 — Sept. 24, 2017

Professor Tom Long describes the scene: “At 3 a.m., the men who have slept on the floor at the Border Farmworkers Center in El Paso rouse themselves. Soon the busses from the farms growing chiles and peppers in New Mexico will rattle into the parking lot. The overseers will step off the busses and look over the crowd of men …

“It’s a Drag”- Romans 14: 1-12, Matthew 18:21-35– Sept. 17, 2017

The 1986 British movie “The Mission” is set in 18th c. South America and revolves around a Jesuit mission to a remote tribe. It stars Jeremy Irons as a Jesuit priest and Robert DeNiro as a mercenary and slaver. Although the scenery is stunning, it is a tough movie to watch, full of brutality and reminders of the worst the …

“Now is the time…”– Ezekiel 33:7-11, Romans 13:8-14–Sept. 10, 2017

Astrologers are having a field day with the state of our country and world these days. Those who make charts of planetary alignment at our birth and follow the progression of dominant astrological patterns are talking about Mars, the war god, ascending, and Gemini, the twin gods, either bringing us together as brothers and sisters or engaging in deadly sibling …

“Holy Ground”- Exodus 3:1-15, Romans 12:9-21– Sept. 3, 2017

I have engaged in the Jewish practice of saying the Mourners’ Kaddish every day for a year, following the death of a loved one. I did it for the year after my father died, then after my brother died, and now am in the midst of this year after my mother died. The prayer doesn’t mention grief or dying, but …

“Transformed Persistence”– Exodus 1:8-2:10, Romans 12:1-8– Aug. 27, 2017

This week it’s hard to read this story from Exodus and not wonder whether it’s from the Bible or the newspaper headlines– Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. He said to his people, “Look, the Israelite people are more numerous and more powerful than we. Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, or they …

“An Army of Light”– Genesis 45:1-15, Matthew 15:21-28– August 20, 2017

Sociologist Brene Brown knows the power of owning our stories. “If we own our story,” she says, “we get to write the ending. If we don’t own our stories, our stories own us.” (FB Live) Now, your impression of “stories” may be that they’re “just” stories, tales for children, told for entertainment or maybe teaching a lesson, like a fable. …

“Can Things Get Any Worse?”– Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28, Matthew 14:22-33– Aug. 13, 2017

Mary Catherine Bateson is an author and anthropologist, who happens to be the daughter of the famous anthropologist Margaret Mead. She is the author of several books, including Composing a Life and, one that I’ve been reading, Composing a Further Life, in which she points out that those of us who have the privilege of looking at living perhaps a …

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