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Showing posts from May, 2015

Trinity Sunday

Sorry I missed posting yesterday. It was a beautiful day and so I didn't spend any time at my desk. But with this being Trinity Sunday, I have to post something today.... Survivor, Eva Hart, remembers the night, April 15, 1912, on which the Titanic plunged 12,000 feet to the Atlantic floor, some two hours and forty minutes after an iceberg tore a 300-foot gash in the starboard side. “I saw all the horror of its sinking, and I heard, even more dreadful, the cries of drowning people.” Although twenty life-boats and rafts were launched—too few and only partly filled—most of the passengers ended up struggling in the icy seas while those in the boats waited a safe distance away. Lifeboat number 14 did row back to the scene after the “unsinkable” ship slipped from sight at 2:20 am. Alone, it chased cries in the darkness, seeking and saving a precious few. Incredibly, no other boat joined it. Some were already overloaded, but in virtually every other boat, those already saved row

Turning the Tables

What would you say is the most important building in The United States of America? What building symbolizes America for you?   Some people might say: the White House.   Now suppose you knew that the White House was soon to be attacked by terrorists or destroyed in a natural disaster.   And suppose further that you knew this was going to happen as a result of God’s judgment on America for our wickedness.   What might you do to warn Americans ahead of time so that they might repent?   You may say: such a situation is hard for me to imagine.   But in order to understand the story about Jesus we are going to read today, we must imagine just such a situation. The most important building in Israel in the time of Jesus was the Temple.   It represented Israel’s religious and national life.   But the Temple system had become corrupt and Jesus predicted its destruction, which actually took place in AD 70.   Furthermore, Jesus warned his fellow Jews, in a cryptic way, of the coming dest

Kyrie Eleison

Mark 10:46-52 They came to Jericho. As he and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, "Son of David, have mercy on me!" Jesus stood still and said, "Call him here." And they called the blind man, saying to him, "Take heart; get up, he is calling you." So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, "What do you want me to do for you?" The blind man said to him, "My teacher, let me see again." Jesus said to him, "Go; your faith has made you well." Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way. The world is seldom, if ever, friendly toward religious enthusiasm. Notice how, when blind Bartimaeus

Can you drink the cup?

Mark 10:32-45 They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them; they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them what was to happen to him, saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles; they will mock him, and spit upon him, and flog him, and kill him; and after three days he will rise again.’   James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him and said to him, ‘Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.’ And he said to them, ‘What is it you want me to do for you?’ And they said to him, ‘Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.’ But Jesus said to them, ‘You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am bapti

What do we get?

Mark 10:28-31 Peter began to say to Jesus, "Look, we have left everything and followed you." Jesus said, "Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age--houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields with persecutions--and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first." Today's Gospel reading from the lectionary follows right on from yesterday. You may remember from yesterday's Gospel reading the rich man walking away grieving because he did not want to give up his many possessions to follow Jesus. Now Peter says to the Lord, "Look, we have left everything and followed you." The sub-text of this seems to be an inherent question on Peter's part, something like, "Well, what do we get for giving up every

The Bridge

As Jesus was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, 'Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?' Jesus said to him, 'Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: "You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honour your father and mother." ' He said to him, 'Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth.' Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, 'You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.' When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.   Then Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, 'How hard it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!' And the disciples were perplexed at these words. But Jesus said to

The Power of His Presence

Today is Pentecost Sunday, when we remember the giving of the Holy Spirit to the Church as recorded in Acts 2. But here is a different way of looking at Pentecost from the Gospel of John.... Nicholas Herman, known to the world as Brother Lawrence, was a 17 th century lay brother; his assignment was to kitchen duty in a Carmelite monastery in Paris. He was born to peasant parents in Lorraine in 1611. As a young man of eighteen, he suddenly awoke to the presence of God when, on a winter’s day, he looked upon a bare tree and thought of its approaching renewal. Herman subsequently served as a soldier in the Thirty Years’ War. The enemy captured him as a spy but he escaped hanging. Later, he received a severe wound in the leg and returned to his own village with a resolve never to be a soldier again. After this, he made the great decision to become a monk. Under the encouragement of his uncle who was a Carmelite, he applied and the order accepted him. He was forty years old at the t