Sermons

    • Whole and Holy Ephesians 1: 3 – 14   (preached on June 2, 2019)   Nursery rhymes were created for children, but they have a way of staying with us, even when we’re older.  Take, for example, the nursery rhyme, “Humpty Dumpty.”   You may not have heard it for years, but I bet you could still recite it by heart: Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall; Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty together again.   ... [read more]
    • A Purpose-Filled Pentecost Acts 2: 1 – 12   (preached on June 9, 2019)   Today we celebrate Pentecost, the day that marks the beginning of the church, in wind and fire.  We celebrate the breath of fresh air that inspired Peter and the other disciples, the powerful wind that enabled them to share the gospel with people from faraway lands.   We celebrate the passion and compassion that empowered them, and millions of others, to spread good news of God’s love in Jesus Christ. &nbs... [read more]
    • Remember the People John 15: 5 – 17 (preached May 26, 2019) Memorial Day weekend, for many of us in New England, marks the beginning of the summer travel season. Summer travel might mean piling everybody into the car for a visit to Maine or the Cape. It might mean going a little farther away, maybe out West with the family or even to Europe. What kind of travel do you enjoy? Do you like to travel for rest and relaxation, or something more exciting? If excitement is your thing, you’re not alon... [read more]
    • Prison Break in Philippi Acts 16: 16 – 34   Preached on May 19, 2019   If you spend any time looking for information on line, you know that you can find just about anything on the Internet.   A few days ago I found an interesting bit of information on line.  I discovered that every year in this country, a whole week is designated for procrastination: a whole week set aside for putting things off.  National Procrastinators’ Week is intended to encourage people to put off serious tasks and ... [read more]
    •  Dinner with Your Enemies Psalm 23: 5   Preached on May 12, 2019   “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”  These words begin the most familiar psalm in all of our sacred scriptures.  The 23rd psalm might well be the best known passage in the entire Bible.  In its verses, generation after generation has found comfort and hope.  The psalm assures us of God’s constant care.  The psalm instills confidence that God will provide for our every need... [read more]
    • We Plan; God Laughs Acts 9: 1 – 20   Saul was an ardent member of the group of Jewish leaders known as Pharisees.  This group practiced careful obedience to the rules of their religion.  From his earliest years, Saul had been schooled in the rules which governed daily life: the right way to wash your hands, the right foods to eat, and the right activities for the Sabbath, the holy day of rest.  The laws and traditions of their faith were vital to the identity of Saul’s people.  They lived u... [read more]
    • Donkey Detail Philippians 2: 5 – 11 Mark 11: 1 – 11   The gospel of Mark was the first of the four gospels to be written.  According to scholars of the Bible, both Matthew and Luke drew on Mark when they wrote their gospels.  The gospel of Mark is also the most concise.  Mark is not wordy.  He doesn’t use a lot of descriptive language.  He goes right to the heart of the matter, using as few words as possible.  That’s why it’s puzzling that, in our gospel for today, Mark spends so muc... [read more]
    • Reflections on the Cross Mark 15: 25 – 39   A couple of weeks ago, in a magazine about current events in churches, a photograph grabbed my attention.  It was a picture of the Episcopal Cathedral Church of St. Paul in downtown Boston, near Boston Common.  The church building has a new symbol on the front.  It’s in a place above the front door that architects call a pediment.  It’s a large sculpture of a seashell.  The sculpture is gleaming aluminum on a bright blue background.  If you lo... [read more]
    • Introduction:  The parable of the Prodigal Son is a familiar one to many of us.  The parable is so powerful and so poignant that a preacher doesn’t really have to expand on it.  All we need to do is tell the parable; it speaks for itself.  In the parable, Jesus describes the three characters: father, elder son, younger son.  You and I can see ourselves in each one.  We can enter into the story and experience it from each person’s point of view.  Maybe, as you listened, you imagined yourself as t... [read more]
    •   When the Faithful Answer is No Luke 4: 1 - 13 This morning as a congregation we enter into the season of Lent.  Lent is a season of preparation, a time for reflection, a time for introspection.  It’s a time to turn away from distractions, and focus on our relationship with God.  Lent has been compared to a kind of spiritual spring training.  In the same way that baseball players spend time getting in shape for the season every spring, Christians spend the forty days of Lent getting in ... [read more]
    • Bad News!  Good News! I Peter 2: 1 – 10   One day last week, as I was going into the supermarket, I noticed a sign on the door:  “New Store Hours: We will now be open seven days a week, from 7 AM to 10 PM.”  The store would now be open Sunday morning, just like any other morning.  For shoppers, Sunday would be like any other day.  In a way I wasn’t surprised.  Stores have been open on Sundays for years now.  But the sign seemed to confirm something that had already happened.  There’s n... [read more]
    • A Radiant, Righteous Life Psalm 1   Winter is still in full swing, but before long it will be the beautiful month of May.  The month of May, among other delights, ushers in a season of graduations.  On campuses all over the country, students and faculty walk in stately processions, wearing costumes dating from the Middle Ages.  Sometimes the mortarboards the students wear are decorated with twenty-first century touches.  Sometimes a student does a goofy dance of celebration as he receives h... [read more]