Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Things to think



Things to Think
Robert Bly (born 1926)
Think in ways you’ve never thought before.
If the phone rings, think of it as carrying a message
Larger than anything you’ve ever heard,
Vaster than a hundred lines of Yeats.
Think that someone may bring a bear to your door,
Maybe wounded and deranged; or think that a moose
Has risen out of the lake, and he’s carrying on his antlers
A child of your own whom you’ve never seen.
When someone knocks on the door, think that he’s about
To give you something large: tell you you’re forgiven,
Or that it’s not necessary to work all the time, or that it’s
Been decided that if you lie down no one will die.
“Things to Think” by Robert Bly from Eating the Honey of Words. Harper Collins, 1999.

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Psalm 23



Psalm 23

Dominus regit me
The Lord is my shepherd; *
I shall not be in want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures *
and leads me beside still waters.
3 He revives my soul *
and guides me along right pathways for his Name's sake.
4 Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I shall fear no evil; *
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
5 You spread a table before me in the presence of those who trouble me; *
you have anointed my head with oil,
and my cup is running over.
6 Surely your goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, *
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

SermonWork ~ Easter 3 ~ The road to Emmaus



I have always found the post-resurrection stories in the Gospels fascinating.  At the same time unbelievable and totally believable, both other-worldly, and also so grounded in our own world and our own experience.  The story of the "Road to Emmaus", as Luke 24:13-35 has become known, is full of truth in my own understanding of the way that Jesus comes to us in our own lives.  Beginning with two disciples walking along, not staying in one place, not hiding in fear as the disciples were earlier, going along, outside in the fresh air and they were talking and discussing.  The Hebrew for this "talking and discussing" can be translated as "throwing words around"...they were interpreting the last days of Jesus, and the first days of the risen Christ.

They were trying to understand what they had experienced in these past days.  And then, in the midst of this wonderful place, in the midst of this conversation (argument?), in the midst of this dynamic moment, Jesus shows up - Jesus shows up as an unknown visitor.  Jesus shows up as a fellow traveler on the way.  Jesus shows up as as stranger.  And Jesus asks them to tell the story, Jesus asks them to share what they have seen and heard.  And they tell him the story, they witness, they give testimony to what they had seen and heard.

Mostly, Jesus listens, and the disciples talk.  When they finish, Jesus then interprets the story that they have told, and wraps is up in a deep discussion and interpretation of "all the scriptures."  Here, Jesus exegetes himself! Pretty amazing.  And then, after this teaching, after this interpretation, they welcome him to have dinner, and just as we do in worship, after the scriptures, and the prayers, and the exegesis (sermon), they broke bread "and then their eyes were opened."  And then, just as they began to understand and see, Jesus vanishes.

Jesus is always there, but our vision is not always clear.  And, at times, we feel his deep deep presence, his tangible reality, but then, seemingly, we can't grasp it as we could a photo, or a recording, or a podcast, or a snapshot.  My own understanding of God's grace in my life is that it has clearly always been there, but there have been some tangible and earthy moments when I could very nearly see Jesus with me, but Jesus is not to be caged or grabbed, but is always with us.  Just as God's prevenient grace  - his Amazing Grace - is always with us, Jesus is with us, guiding us, interpreting our lives for us, and teaching us the ways that our own stories are bound up in the grand story of God.

On our own journey of life, when we find the time to "throw words around" and tell the story of Jesus, and this grand story of God, and break bread and share wine, Jesus becomes tangible to us, and our eyes are opened to the ever-present reality of God in our lives, every moment and every second of our lives.

~Peter+


Luke 24:13-35
Now on that same day two of Jesus' disciples were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, but their eyes were kept from recognizing him.

And he said to them, “What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?” They stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?” He asked them, “What things?” They replied, “The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place.

Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him.” Then he said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?” Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures.

As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. But they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.” So he went in to stay with them. When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight.

They said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?” That same hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together. They were saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!” Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.







Sunday, April 23, 2017

Peace be with you


John 20:19-31

When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."
But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe."
A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe." Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe."
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.

A new birth into a living hope!



1 Peter 1:3-9

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith-- being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire-- may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, for you are receiving the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

New Episcopal chaplain appointed at Harvard

From Jim Simons' Blog,  "3RiversEpiscopal" (which you all need to check out!)




FRIDAY, APRIL 21, 2017

New Episcopal chaplain appointed at Harvard

From Massachusetts-

The Board of Trustees of the Episcopal Chaplaincy at Harvard has announced the appointment of the Rev. Margery Kennelly, currently the assistant rector at the Church of the Redeemer in Chestnut Hill, as Harvard's next Episcopal chaplain. She will begin her ministry at Harvard on June 1, and will serve a two-year appointment.

The Board of Trustees of the Episcopal Chaplaincy at Harvard has announced the appointment of the Rev. Margery Kennelly, currently the assistant rector at the Church of the Redeemer in Chestnut Hill, as Harvard's next Episcopal chaplain. She will begin her ministry at Harvard on June 1, and will serve a two-year appointment.

Kennelly succeeds the Rev. Luther Zeigler, who has been the Episcopal chaplain at Harvard for six years. During that time, Zeigler led the Harvard Chaplains as its president for two years and was the founding chair of the university's new Board of Religious, Spiritual and Ethical Life.


More here-

http://www.diomass.org/diocesan-news/new-episcopal-chaplain-appointed-harvard

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Bishop Daniel Gutierrez on Eastertide

From Bishop Daniel Gutierrez of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania and his "A Shepherd in the field"blog:


Eastertide



As a community, we rejoice in our Lord’s resurrection.  

We have walked through a sacred time as hopeful people called Christians.   The penitential season of Lent has passed, the profound sacredness of Holy Week is a memory, and we loudly sing the Alleluias of Easter.  What next? 

It is Eastertide; embrace and live the call of following Jesus. 

After the resurrection, Jesus Christ was out on the road.  He was touching, transforming, envisioning, and breaking open new possibilities.  It is Good News for the world.  It is our chance to show His face.  Reveal the face of Christ to those who are seeking, who need reminding or to those do not know Jesus.  What a remarkable opportunity this Eastertide. 

Let us go out and proclaim a way that is unlike the shallow offerings of the world. 

In small groups, in our daily actions, we will step forward and be intentional.   Let us make Christ visible through our lives.   Through prayer, involvement at your church, community service, inviting people to church (or a meal), kindness, generosity, and love, let us bring the message of the resurrection into the world.  Embrace the same hope as the early Christians. 

During this Eastertide, let us make Jesus the Christ visible.  It has been proven time and time again; Jesus lives, moves and breathes.  He changes lives, and He transforms the world. 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Monday in Easter Week



Grant, we pray, Almighty God, that we who celebrate with awe the Paschal feast may be found worthy to attain to everlasting joys; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Romans 6:3-11

Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. For whoever has died is freed from sin. But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. The death he died, he died to sin, once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Easter!



O God, your never-failing providence sets in order all things both in heaven and earth: Put away from us, we entreat you, all hurtful things, and give us those things which are profitable for us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.