Sermons

Sermons

12th Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 16A17 I’d be willing to bet that most of us here today have had regular, reoccurring experiences of doubting or at least questioning our faith, our church, and even the Bible. The problem is, we’re afraid to admit it. Why is that? Why are people so afraid to question or doubt? It may be that some people think faith is such a fragile thing that a change brought about by a new understanding of history or a new interpretation…

11th Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 15A17 Sermon “It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles.” “Woman, great is your faith.” This morning, we have two stories in one Gospel reading. At first look, they seem to be two separate and unrelated stories. In the first, Jesus argues with the scribes and Pharisees about the washing of hands before eating. It seems like a silly thing to be arguing about,…

10th Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 14A14 Have you ever noticed how fear can cause people to do some really foolish things? I heard a story about a Serbian man named Lucas who was the victim of a giant tsunami that devastated countries around the Indian Ocean. Now, you may be wondering how someone in Serbia was a victim of a tsunami in the Indian Ocean. Well, apparently Lucas was safely at home in Serbia watching television when news of the tsunami broke. Lucas was…

Feast of the Transfiguration 2017

Feast of Transfiguration Have you ever been in a group where someone told a joke and everyone else laughed except you? That’s sometimes how it is with life — sometimes we feel like we’re somehow missing a point that everyone else seems to get. Sometimes life doesn’t make sense for us and we’re not sure why. We experience disappointment, or our days seem void of purpose, or we have to face a crisis. And we find ourselves asking, what am…

6th Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 10A17 I think most of you know me well enough to know that I have a particular bias about the importance of optimism. Here’s a story that exemplifies that bias. It seems there was once a set of identical twins. One was a hope-filled optimist. The other was a sad and hopeless pessimist. The worried parents of the two boys brought them to a psychologist. The psychologist suggested to the parents a plan to balance the twins’ personalities. “On…

4th Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 8A17 In life, we all have questions to which we need to find an answer. Questions that come to each person at different times and for different reasons. But there is one question we all have to deal with ALL the time, and that is “What will I to do in this moment?” Sometimes the issue is far-reaching, like “Should I ask him or her to marry me?” or “Where should I go to college?” At other times, the…

3rd Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 7A For many years, I was a fan of the animated television series The Simpsons. In one of my favorite episodes, Marge Simpson is going about her daily duties — fixing meals, cleaning the house, shopping for food, picking the kids up and dropping them off, feeding the baby, and all the while putting up with her husband, Homer. Finally, as she is crossing the Springfield bridge with Bart and Lisa fighting in the back seat with Maggie, the…

2nd Sunday after Pentecost 2017

Proper 6A17 (Fathers’ Day) Every year, the National Center for Fathering — yes, there is such an organization — conducts Father of the Year essay contests in partnership with local schools. A few years ago, over 100,000 school children submitted essays on the topic, “What My Father Means to Me.” Here is a sampling from some of the essays: A first grader writes, “My dad is the best dad ever. I would kiss a pig for him.” Another first grader…

Trinity Sunday 2017

Trinity A17 You may be familiar with the poem, “The Blind Men and the Elephant.” It concerns six blind men who decide to satisfy their curiosities as to what an elephant is like. Upon arriving where the elephant was, each man approached it from a different stance. The first man, as he encountered the side of the elephant, said an elephant is like a wall. The second, as he felt the tusk, said that an elephant was like a spear.…

Pentecost 2017

Pentecost I wonder if there is anyone here this morning who is absolutely satisfied with everything you’ve accomplished, everything you have, and everything you are as a person. Probably not. I read recently that only one-half of all women and only one-third of all men rate themselves as being satisfied and happy with their life. The truth is that many of us find ourselves dissatisfied with our lives or even sometimes with our very selves. For that reason, a philosopher…
  • 1
  • 2