Sermons (Page 3)

Sermons (Page 3)

Third Sunday after Epiphany

Third Sunday after Epiphany (Annual Meeting) One of the most helpful organizations I belonged to as a teenager was the Key Club. Key Club was the teenage incarnation of the Kiwanis Club.  Much of what I know about public speaking, organizational leadership and parliamentary procedure I learned from my time in Key Club. Our High School Key Club always opened its meetings with a distinctive ritual. The president called the meeting to order and immediately asked “Future Leaders of America,…

Second Sunday after Epiphany

Second Sunday after Epiphany (MLK, Jr. Weekend) I suppose it’s a hazard of my profession, but I find it difficult to go anywhere without looking for, look at, and thinking about churches and houses of worship.   I did it again this past week when I was in Los Angeles visiting friends.  As I drove from Torrance to West Hollywood and back I couldn’t help but notice how many churches or other houses of worship I passed. There were Roman Catholic…

First Sunday after Epiphany

First Sunday after Epiphany We’re all familiar with the phrase, “Terms of Endearment.”  They’re those distinctive words or phrases we use to let folks know they are special to us. In preparation for this sermon, I decided to make a list of all the names that we have used at different times in his life, to refer to our son, Adam.  I was amazed at how many I came up with. There is Adambadam, Adamboo, Boopster, Bopster, Moopster, Mopster, Mister…

Feast of the Epiphany

Epiphany On the feast of the Epiphany in the year 1929, an 18-year-old girl arrived by train at the capital of the Bengal state in the country of India. Raised in comfort in Eastern Europe, this bright young woman would spend the next 20 years of her life as a Sister of Loretto, teaching geography to high-school girls from wealthy families in the suburbs of that capital. In 1949, at the age of 38, that same woman felt a powerful…

First Sunday after Christmas

First Sunday after Christmas When Adam was about 4 or 5 years old, one of our favorite father and son traditions was to get up early and have breakfast at a local diner—Adam used to call it “pancake day”.  Having done all our preparation for Christmas one year, Adam and I took some time out for a breakfast at this favorite diner.  At the booth next to us was a family of three—a little girl, her father, and mother.  The…

Christmas – The Feast of the Incarnation

Christmas A mother wrote into the “Clean Laugh” web site with this story: Her children had spent many summer days watching their new Cinderella video until they knew all the songs by heart. To combat the heat, they had also left most of the windows open in the house. Little did they know that others had been enjoying the video right along with them. A few days later, this mother was out in her yard when she heard the burly…

Fourth Sunday in Advent

Fourth Sunday in Advent I have a question.  On this fourth Sunday of Advent, as we wait for the Christ child to be born again in our hearts, what do you need to hear today?  When you hear the story of Mary being visited by her cousin Elizabeth.  What do you need to take away from the telling of this story today?  Perhaps one thing we all need and that we all can take away with us today is the…

Third Sunday in Advent

Third Sunday in Advent I have always loved the legend of how St. Francis taught the people of a small town to “feed their wolf.” It is a strangely humorous saga with layer upon layer of metaphor and meaning.  In a nutshell, the residents of this small town had a problem.  Each morning when people woke up, they began to find the bloody remains of some of their townsfolk on the streets of their beautiful city.  Since the people were…

Second Sunday in Advent

Second Sunday in Advent Today, Luke’s opening words might look something like this: In the second year of the Presidency of Donald J. Trump, alongside Attorney General Jeff Sessions- Oops, I mean acting Acting Attorney General Matthew Whittaker, when Jerry Brown was governor of California and Justin the Archbishop of Canterbury, Michael the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church and Marc the Bishop of the Diocese of California… You get the idea. Back then, people didn’t measure time then way…

First Sunday in Advent

First Sunday in Advent So, today is the first Sunday of Advent, when we mark the beginning of a new liturgical year.  And during the week, as I was reflecting on this, I started thinking about how as children we have so many “beginnings”.  For children, everything is “new.”  Conversely, though, I also then started thinking about how the older we get, the more “endings” there seem to be.  At first, I thought this was a pretty depressing realization to…