Home is where…the sermon is?

Yes, indeed. For now at least. Due to the previously-arranged preaching schedule, the previous Sunday was my first opportunity to offer a sermon during our stay-safe-at-home time here in Illinois. So, yes, I spend the first few minutes talking about just how weird that feels. Probably too much time on that. But I strive to …

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The Silence of Saturday

"It's Friday...but Sunday's comin'!" That's a popular refrain among Christians on these final days of Holy Week. But we might reasonably respond in our most skeptical tone, "Yeah, right!" Over on my favorite blog, Slacktivist, Fred Clark posted Holy Saturday. First seen in 2010, he's reposted it every year. Fred has written a ton of …

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Remember Ash Wednesday?

Turns out Ash Wednesday was only [checks notes] three weeks ago. I don't know about you, but it sure feels to me more like three years ago. I mean, what a world we were living in way, way back in February. Think of all the things we did that month: I saw a movie...in a …

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Happy Christmas 2019

Merry Christmas! The closest thing I have to a tradition on this blog is this Christmas day offering. Each Christmas I post the Isaiah passage below (which is a reading for Christmas Eve worship every year); John Lennon's "Happy Christmas (War is Over)," which I find the world's best and most challenging Christmas song; and …

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Why am I in the Washington Post this week?

The short answer?Because I joined 99 other clergy -- two from each state -- in signing an open letter to Congress. That letter ran in Thursday's (October 17th) Washington Post. The more complete answer?I know there are hundreds (at least) of incidents of injustice in our communities, our states, our country, and our world. I …

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International Day of the Girl…and Women?

I know today is Indigenous Peoples Day. But I started to write this last week on International Day of the Girl. Is it ok to celebrate women today too? I think so. It seems like a good time to share a post I wrote this summer for my church blog. As I often proclaim, I …

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Answers to questions you never asked

Then again, doesn't that pretty well describe a majority of blogging?? Probably in much the same way as, say, September 22nd is, apparently, National Hobbit Day, and March is, among other things, National Frozen Food Month...October is Clergy Appreciation Month. However, this year the church I serve decided to expand that idea and so declared …

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‘She Who Laughs Last…’ a sermon on Genesis 18

From 8th grade through the end of high school, I was always in a school where one of my parents was a teacher. That's probably the main reason I never skipped a class in those years. Fast forward to college and, well, that record didn't last. But I didn't skip many or often because I …

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‘Temptation Wilderness’: a sermon on Matthew chapter 4

This is probably a bit odd, but despite the sermon title, I never did make a connection between the temptations Jesus faced in chapter 4 of Matthew's* gospel and any of the recent TV shows that play on that theme. Boy howdy, did I make a slew of other references and winks, though. 'Cause, you …

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‘We’re Related to…Them??’: a sermon on Matthew 1

Brevity. Not a quality for which many pastors are known. At least not when we're in preaching mode. We tend to like to talk. A lot. The truth is (at least in my experience both listening to sermons and giving them), a short sermon that is also a good sermon is much more difficult to …

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