Posts by katherinesedwick

Oct. 13, 2019 – sermon

Posted by on Sun, Oct 13, 2019 in Season after Pentecost, Sermons

Like the ten lepers in this Gospel reading, we’re moving through life’s challenges and something draws our attention, makes us pause. The lepers saw Jesus walking through their town, and it was enough for them to call out to him. They saw or had heard he was worth asking for help. So, keeping their distance (as was required of those with leprosy) they call out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” 

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Sep. 29, 2019 – sermon

Posted by on Sun, Sep 29, 2019 in Feast Days, Season after Pentecost, Sermons

On this celebration of St. Michael’s Day we’ve had the scripture and images of the Archangel Michael told, and even brought to life in pageant, and in doing so each year we’re invited into the timeless story of Michael, and to live into its rich depth. When Nathanael encounters Jesus he asks, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus says he saw him under the fig tree, before Philip called him. There is a surface-sound to the conversation at first, and yet Nathaniel realizes there is something deeper going on. In spite of asking Jesus how he knew him, in that moment Nathanael knows Jesus for exactly who he is, not just some roving rabbi, but the Son of God!

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Sep. 22, 2019 – sermon

Posted by on Sun, Sep 22, 2019 in Season after Pentecost, Sermons

There are a few misconceptions about this gospel reading, so let’s dispense with those first. It’s helpful to note that the debts here are on a ‘commercial’ scale; 900 gallons of olive oil is not a household account from a small family tenant farmer! The grain owed is around 1200 bushels – reducing that to 80% is significant, and the local businesses would be buzzing. Also, the series of five sayings or interpretations which come after the parable indicate that even as the author set this story down there was likely some struggle to understand the parable—and there still is. Even the punctuation in your bulletins is unlikely, since the parable itself ends mid-sentence, and is then followed by commentary.

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Sep. 15, 2019 – sermon

Posted by on Sun, Sep 15, 2019 in Season after Pentecost, Sermons

I don’t know about you, but I tend to gravitate right into the picturesque shepherd searching for the lost sheep and the woman sweeping for her missing coin, but notice that first we are first told that all of “the tax collectors and sinners were coming near to listen Jesus.” Why? And why did this then provoke surprise in the scribes and pharisees? Often tax collectors were corrupt agents of the Romans, and abusive in how they collected taxes for them. They were usually not from the local area and were targets of scorn because of their collusion with Roman oppressors and their callous disregard for the local ethos, people and economy.  Pharisees were set aside to live their devotion to God by ongoing study and Torah observance, and by lives of purity in all facets of life, and in this way,  they too were separated from the average local folk, and ate only with one another so to observe purity laws.

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Sep. 8, 2019 – sermon

Posted by on Tue, Sep 10, 2019 in Season after Pentecost, Sermons

Harsh as it sounded just now, our gospel continues from last week with Jesus’ teaching on priorities, and where we place the needs of our souls in that list of priorities. Yet to hear Jesus’ say we are unable to be his disciples unless we ‘hate’ mother and father, sister and brother, and so on, feels in direct contrast to his gospel of love. The word hate here doesn’t connote ‘feelings’ though, it’s not about an emotion of hate at all, rather about how we act and think of one thing as more important than another. This reading refers to placing people and possessions in order after what is most important; faithfully following the Holy One. Last week Mother Ann spoke of Augustine’s realization that he and fellow Christians had put too much trust in the material things that fall victim to moths and rust.

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