Sermon Archives

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 […]

February 20, 2022

How to Have Enemies

How to Have Enemies

When my sister Tricia was three years old, she got in an argument with Heather, another three-year-old. They were on the stoop outside our front door, and Heather, well, Heather pushed Tricia down. Tricia was shocked that Heather would resort to such brutality, and she immediately got up, came into the house, and told all […]

January 10, 2021

Inauguration Day

Many times, before I read the scripture that provides the focus for my sermon, I try to provide its context — what has happened or what is being addressed just before the verses that I’m about to read. Today, though, I’m going to do the opposite. I’m going to work backwards. I will still read […]

March 25, 2018

Wild Peace

I think was in 4th grade when the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred, and I remember vividly overhearing my parents ask each other if this was the beginning of WW3. My heart froze. And after that my fear increased. It was the era when people were building fall-out shelters, and we had regular drills at school […]

October 29, 2017

Eyes Wide Open

I was young when my fascination for Samson and Delilah started. Children’s bible—thinking Delilah was pretty—I think that I wanted to be like her My affection for this story has changed over the years, but I have always had a particular interest in it. As I have studied this text I keep asking myself why […]

January 3, 2016

The Refugee Option

Most of us grew up with nativity scenes in our homes. At the center of the scene is a cute baby Jesus, happily lying in a manger. Around him are a proud Mary and Joseph, along with three or four shepherds and maybe some chorusing angels flapping around on the roof of the shed. Of […]

December 6, 2015

Vigorous Speech

Have you ever found yourself wanting to argue with God? I have. Often. Not only did I want to argue with God, I have argued with God. For example, on several occasions I’ve had it out with God over violence. Why, I ask, won’t you do more to stop the civil war in Nigeria, the […]

January 4, 2015

The Refugee

I’d like you to meet Rose Kingston. Rose Kingston lives in New York City, but that’s not where she was born. In fact, Rose was not born anywhere in the United States. She was born in Monrovia, Liberia, where she and her family once lived comfortably and safely. Rose’s mother worked as a secretary in […]

December 28, 2014

The Threat

Who would have thought that Mary would pose a threat to Herod? King Herod was one of the great men of the world. His father was Antipater, a man who had lots of wealth and influence. His mother was a Nabataean princess. He was born in 73 BCE and died in March or April in […]