Sermon – May 19, 2019 – Fifth Sunday of Easter & Confirmation Sunday

Love, Love, Love Friend was sharing with me some remarks she had heard from people who want to leave the ELCA. Not this church.  Another place entirely. One angry person said at a meeting, “Jesus didn’t say anything about social justice. He had nothing to say about that, so neither should we.” … [Read more...]

Sermon – May 12, 2019 – Fourth Sunday after Easter

  The Good Shepherd and the Snatchers I recently had my family DNA evaluated and, not surprisingly, it came back heavy on the Norwegian roots, some Eastern Scandinavia flavored with Russia that reflects my Finnish heritage, and then there was a smattering of genetic markers from all along … [Read more...]

Sermon – May 5, 2019 – Third Sunday after Easter

  He Never Gives Up Let’s remind each other here for a second, just to be clear.    Twice before this encounter the disciples had met the risen Christ, face to face, showed them his wounds.  “We have seen the Lord!” they told Thomas.  He is alive.   They had received the gift of the … [Read more...]

Sermon – April 28, 2019 – Second Sunday after Easter

Let’s begin in the name of the Risen Christ +, Amen.  Have you ever been doing an ordinary task and remembered something you needed to complete or gained insight about a situation you had been puzzling over for some time? I seem to experience this type of revelation most often when I am brushing … [Read more...]

Sermon – April 21, 2019 – Easter

He Is Risen! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia! Friends, that is what we have to share today. Jesus Christ, who was dead is alive! In our Easter story today death has receded to the shadows, has conceded his chief role in the crucifixion to now a conquered character slinking away … [Read more...]

Sermon – April 14, 2019 – Palm Sunday

I really don’t have a lot to add to that because this story stands on its own. But I would remind us all that in these days Jesus, in the fullness of his humanity, was denied by his closest disciple and betrayed by another in whom he had put his trust. He was misunderstood, misrepresented, mocked, … [Read more...]

Sermon – April 7, 2019 – Fifth Sunday in Lent

  Mary’s Extravagance If you made a good deal, you could pick up a new Corvette Stingray for $54,000.  A tricked out Ford King Ranch pickup would cost you about the same. If you are a new cop in Champaign, you’d be in the $54k range, a little better in Urbana. About the same for a … [Read more...]

Sermon – March 31, 2019 – Fourth Sunday in Lent

  Welcome Home Those of us who have spent any time to time in church probably heard this story 100 times. It’s one of those tales that we could tell from beginning to end probably get most of the details right. But, like most things we’ve heard time and again there is the danger that … [Read more...]

Sermon – March 24 2019 – Third Sunday in Lent

I know I’ve told some of you this story, but I thought of it this week and want to share it.. I am not making this up.  When I was in the Army, one of my drill sergeant’s names was Sgt. Panty. Now, right away you can see all sorts of problems, can’t you.  Compounding his unfortunate name, Sgt. Panty … [Read more...]

Sermon – March 10, 2019 – First Sunday of Lent

Temptation Those of you who have been around here awhile have been part of the conversation on conditional and unconditional promises.  Conditional transactions are if/then.  If you do this, they you will be rewarded.  If you don’t do this, you will be punished.  Plenty of that in the … [Read more...]