September 2018 Preaching Themes

Here's are a few of my thoughts as I prepare to preach this month, with some news items, preaching ideas, and links to past sermons.  Please comment and share your thoughts on the month as well.  We are in the middle section of Mark's Gospel throughout the month, where Jesus demonstrates the nature of his … Continue reading September 2018 Preaching Themes

Jesus Confronts the Propagandists

Mark 3:20-35 Mark’s Gospel lesson today shows us how propaganda works.  Set the terms of a debate by labeling your opponent first, and attach them to something abhorrent.  Here is how Jesus’s opponents do it.  “You are in league with Beezlebul.”   You’re working for the devil, aren’t you, that is where your power comes from!  … Continue reading Jesus Confronts the Propagandists

Trinity: God in Alignment

Today is known as Trinity Sunday.  In talking about God as three persons in one substance, we can get lost in the intellectual challenge of defining how the creator, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are inter-related.  A neglected topic is how more images of God creates a depth and balance to our understanding of God.  … Continue reading Trinity: God in Alignment

Where the Spirit Meets Us

The Pentecost story is supercharged with rushing wind, tongues of flames, ecstatic speaking in many languages as a mass phenomenon.  Pentecost is described like a mass rally, charged with energy, a great outburst.  It’s the Pride March on Holy Spirit steroids. Its tempting to preach this story, especially in this time of rallies, in a small … Continue reading Where the Spirit Meets Us

Psalm 96: Sing a New Song

Preached on a Cantata Sunday, May 13, 2018 My mornings have changed dramatically the last few days.  Since November, the house has been shut tight against the cold, and therefore the sounds of the outdoors.  Now we open our windows a crack for the fresh air, and very early with the rosy, fingered dawn, the … Continue reading Psalm 96: Sing a New Song

Where the Welcome Meets the Road

Sermon on Acts 8:26-40 How did Christianity spread to become the dominant religion of the Roman Empire in the 4thcentury after Jesus?  At this weekend’s Awakening Conference, Bart Erman, author of “The Triumph of Christianity, tried to answer the question.  One school of thought is that Christianity prospered because of its exclusivist and missionary nature, … Continue reading Where the Welcome Meets the Road

Baptism and Belonging

Acts 8:26-40 I have a new theological toy to play with, and after applying to this week’s text in Acts, I have decided it is rather dangerous. Some toys come with warning labels that say the contents are flammable, that they aren’t meant for children under the age of five due to choking hazards, or … Continue reading Baptism and Belonging

“Joyful Disbelief and Still Wondering”

Easter 3B  Luke 24:36-48 (In Eastertide, we have 40 days to reflect on the challenges of understanding the resurrection, and the whatever doubts and complications arrive theologically as we think about if we believe in miracles, are open to mystery, and want to have faith along with our questions.  Consider this part to of dealing … Continue reading “Joyful Disbelief and Still Wondering”

One Day Coaching Skills Basics for Busy Pastors!

Non-Directive Coaching Skills Basics for Busy Pastors Led by Rev. Todd Weir and Rev. Jim Latimer Date: May 19, 2018 Time: 9:00 am - 3:00 pm Location: Edwards House Meeting & Retreat Center, Framingham MA Cost: $35 (includes refreshments, lunch, book (The Coaching Habit) and materials) Register Online: https://macucc-reg.brtapp.com/Non-DirectiveCoaching Questions: Andrea Bellarosa - bellarosaa@macucc.org What … Continue reading One Day Coaching Skills Basics for Busy Pastors!

Walking and Hoping With Jesus

Luke 24:13-35 Cleopas and Simon are heading to Emmaus.  They have about two hours for one of the most important human experiences, a long walk with a good friend to figure things out. There is a flow to a good walk together. It begins with relief and gratitude of companionship.  After Easter Jeanne and I took a … Continue reading Walking and Hoping With Jesus