On a summer night just before the first grade, my mother woke me up and led me downstairs. My younger brothers and my sister must have joined us, but I don’t remember. I do remember that my father had made cream puffs, my favorite dessert, but that on this particular might he insisted that we […]
Ol’ Blue Eyes, Mr. Francis Albert Sinatra, was a good friend of Mr. Jack Daniels. Nor was he unacquainted with the occasional martini. He renewed these friendships on regular occasions in barrooms nationwide — gallivanting with the Rat Pack, drinking until all hours. Sinatra was such a beloved regular, in fact, that he had his […]
I was in talking to an atheist the other day. (Pastors meet more atheists than you might imagine.) This fellow had a question – “What should I expect, as an unbeliever, if I go to a church for the first time?” Without saying it directly, he was a little apprehensive. He was afraid, I think, […]
Testimony for Reformation Sunday, October 27-28, 2018 Jeremiah 31:31-34; Psalm 46; Romans 3:19-28; John 8:31-36 I am a Lutheran, but I wasn’t always a Lutheran. I started off as a devout Southern Baptist, raised to love God, trusting that I was a part of God’s family, the church, because I had decided to follow Jesus. […]
This weekend we’re focusing on stories and memories and the impact of losing those stories and memories.
My life, I sometimes think, really began when I was twenty-three years old. I was working a desk job in the city, living a life of quiet desperation. One day I quit, stuffed some clothes into a backpack and flew to the Caribbean. Not one of the nice islands, either. I went to Haiti, the […]
There was a game that people used to play, back in the Middle Ages. On certain days, they would reverse their roles. Kings might dress up like peasants, and vice-versa. One version of this game was called “The Boy Bishop.” On the Feast of the Holy Innocents, in some places, a choirboy would be chosen […]
Sermon for the 18th Sunday after Pentecost/Lectionary 26/Proper 21, Year B; September 26-27, 2015 “Blessing of the Quilts” Weekend Numbers 11:4-6, 10-16, 24-29; Psalm 19:7-14; James 5:13-20; Mark 9:38-50 Wow! It is an amazing treat to come to worship on this particular weekend each year! I mean, when else do we see the place […]
Some people say that the posting of the 95 Theses, which we remember today, was the birthday of the Lutheran Church. But that was just one scholar inviting other scholars to an academic debate.
Old European churches were built with something called a chancel screen — a sort of wall that separated the place where people sit from the area around the altar. This meant that during communion, you could not see what was happening.