Sermons

The Fourth Sunday of Lent – The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Fourth Sunday of Lent: March 30, 2014

1 Samuel 16:1-13; Psalm 23; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41

Preacher: The Rev. Samuel J. Smith, Assistant Priest, St. Michael’s Church

 

Believe it or not, we are on the downhill side of Lent now – it always seems to me that the Fourth Sunday in Lent marks the inevitability of Holy Week. The Church fathers and mothers thought so too – they marked this Sunday as Laetare Sunday – that term is taken from an Introit at Mass, “Laetare Jerusalem” (or “O be joyful, Jerusalem”). This Sunday is also known as Mothering Sunday, Refreshment Sunday, Mid-Lent Sunday, and Rose Sunday (because the golden rose sent by the popes to Catholic sovereigns was blessed on this Sunday). Traditionally, it was a little window to relax Lenten disciplines, a day of hope as Easter is in sight.[i] So, happy Laetare Sunday. (more…)

The Second Sunday in Lent – The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Second Sunday in Lent – March 16, 2014

Genesis 12:1-4aRomans 4:1-5, 13-17; Psalm 121; John 3:1-17 

Preacher: The Rev. Samuel J. Smith, Assistant Priest, St. Michael’s Church

 “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” Well, that’s the way the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible translates this loaded statement from Jesus. If your frame of reference is anything like mine, however, you are much more likely to hear in your head an alternative reading: you must be born again. This term, born again, is laden with cultural baggage for me. I grew up in the sixties and seventies in Texas, a place teeming with Southern Baptists and other evangelicals, all who understood being “born again” as shorthand for having a distinct conversion experience. (more…)

The Last Sunday after the Epiphany – the Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Last Sunday of the Epiphany – March 2, 2014

Exodus 24:12-18Psalm 992 Peter 1:16-21Matthew 17:1-9

Preacher: The Rev. Samuel J. Smith, Assistant Priest, St. Michael’s Church

 

Good morning, and Happy Texas Independence Day! On March 2, 1836, settlers in Mexican Texas officially broke from Mexico, creating the Republic of Texas. Today is a holiday in the Lone Star State.[i] Since you have two priests who hail from Texas, I didn’t think we should let this day pass without at least a nod of recognition. (more…)

The Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany – The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Rev. Samuel J. Smith

The Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany: February 16, 2014

Deuteronomy 30:15-20Psalm 119:1-81 Corinthians 3:1-9Matthew 5:21-37

Preacher: The Rev. Samuel J. Smith, Assistant Priest, St. Michael’s Church

Good morning, and a belated Happy Valentine’s Day to you all. On Friday I was on Facebook and read a friend’s post that really encapsulates how I feel about February 14th: (more…)

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany – Meredith Kadet

Meredith Kadet
Meredith Kadet

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany – February 9, 2014

Isaiah 58:1-121 Corinthians 2:1-16Matthew 5:13-20Psalm 112

Preacher: Meredith Kadet, St. Michael’s parishioner and former seminarian, graduate of Union Theological Seminary

Growing up, I can remember eating breakfast with my father, and watching him salt his eggs. And salt his eggs. And salt his eggs. And salt his eggs. My mother would watch him and quote the version of today’s gospel as it appears in the Gospel of Mark: Salt is Good.

But – if it’s lost its taste, how can saltiness be restored?

Of course it wasn’t the salt that lost its taste at breakfast – it was my father’s taste buds. He’s been smoking for more than fifty years now, so salt -among other things – has lost its taste. (more…)

The Feast of the Presentation – Lucinda Mosher

Lucinda Mosher

Lucinda Mosher

The Feast of the Presentation – February 2, 2014

Malachi 3:1-4Psalm 84Hebrews 2:14-18Luke 2:22-40

Preacher: Lucinda Mosher, Th.D.

 

For mine eyes have seen salvation.—Luke 2:30

Down with the rosemary and bays,
Down with the misletoe ;
Instead of holly, now up-raise
The greener box (for show).

The holly hitherto did sway;
Let box now domineer
Until the dancing Easter day,
Or Easter’s eve appear.

I love Robert Herrick’s Candlemas carol! Several more verses lilt us through the rest of the Christian year; eventually, the carol concludes: (more…)