Sermon Archives

September 11, 2022

Holding Space for Transformation

Holding Space for Transformation

It is good to be here with you all this morning. As I look around the room, I see many familiar faces and feel a sense of kinship here at Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship. It is an honor to be here with you today on this day in which you mark the installation of Billy […]

July 24, 2022

Catching Glimpses

Catching Glimpses

I was told for this sermon to choose a scripture that means something to me. Perhaps one of the scriptures that I listed my MLI, the form you fill if your someone who is considering ministry in the Mennonite church and there you list some of your favorite scripture passages. And so, my immediate thought […]

July 10, 2022

Family Likeness

Family Likeness

When my oldest granddaughter was four-years-old, she made a bold pronouncement: “I’m a strong, independent woman.” That drew some chuckles, recognizing where that came from: she picked it up from her feminist mother. Often, in observing the conduct of children, we’re inclined to say: Doesn’t she just remind you of her mother/father. Or, You can […]

June 26, 2022

Gospel of Peace

Gospel of Peace

We are willful human beings. Our wills bump up against each other. This can lead to conflict, alienation, enmity. Sometimes our offences against each other are small and we can just move on. Other times they are large and need to be attended to. Otherwise, relationships can break down—there is no longer a sense of […]

June 19, 2022

War, Worship, and Sacrifice

War, Worship, and Sacrifice

June 19. June 19, 1865. On that date, Union soldiers arrived in Texas, the remotest state in the former Confederacy and proclaimed to both enslaved people and slaveowners that the war had ended and that all slaves were free. That’s what Juneteenth commemorates. The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture calls this […]

June 12, 2022

Cross Purposes

Cross Purposes

Where were you on the morning of 9/11—that is, if you were born and are old enough to remember? I was pastoring the Toledo Mennonite Church at the time. That morning I was in a pastors’ meeting at a restaurant on the edge of Pettisville, OH. One of the owners interrupted our meeting to tell […]

June 5, 2022

The Unfinished City

The Unfinished City

It’s Pentecost. And here we are, all together in one place, praying and singing, and listening. But this, all of this, it didn’t happen by accident. Our worship today is not a spontaneous eruption, an extemporaneous production, an extraneous interruption. No, we have planned for this service, this particular service.

May 29, 2022

Best Practices

Best Practices

Why do we go to church? Why did you come here this morning? You could have stayed at home to read a Sunday paper and have an extra cup of coffee, or ride bike on the Pumpkinvine. Instead, you came here. Why? I recently met with an old friend. Since we hadn’t been together in […]

May 22, 2022

In the Watershed

In the Watershed

In the beginning of the Bible, in Genesis, chapter 2 — we’re given the story of Creation, the beginning of time. We’re told that God created human beings, planted a garden, and then placed them in the garden. We’re told that the trees of Eden were beautiful, and that they produced fruit that was good […]

May 15, 2022

Let it Be With Me

Let it Be With Me

During the time of discernment before deciding to go to begin seminary, I kept encountering passages and even whole sermons on ‘do not fear’.  Now, this theme pops up quite a bit in the Bible. I’ve heard this phrase is present around 365 times, one for every day of the year. But encountering the command […]

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