Think of the different cries we hear in the wilderness: the cry of the hawk circling the sky, the murmur of the dove in the grass; a battle cry, a cry of grief; the cry of the warrior, the cry of the lost lover. All are in the passion of Advent.
John the Baptist arrives with the cry of the hawk. He is a warrior in battle, the prophet going to Jerusalem. PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD, John first cries. MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT. (You brood of vipers, we’ll hear next week). Make a path through the wilderness. Make a path through the clutter in your hearts.
Both paths need opening in the wilderness of everyday pre-occupations, and in our cluttered hearts. How many of you have cleared a path in the woods? I’m not talking about raking leaves in the backyard. I’m talking about a woods filled with vines, thick with undergrowth, with low lying branches that snap back. Has anyone cleared a path in such a setting? Who has cut a path in such a setting?
No one of us is called to be a Christian alone. That’s why we’re here, saying our prayers together and having communion. We are called together into the Body of Christ. No heroes in this business. Christ opens the way for us to become neighbors, friends; mothers, fathers, sons and daughters privileged to be part of the promise, care and spirit God holds for us and in us- in Christ our Lord.
Headed by Calvin Dube, the Cell to Street Ministry hosted a BBQ on August 22nd at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in Auburn, with 60 people attending. Family members from as far away as New York came to help released inmates celebrate their new lives. This was the 3rd year that the BBQ was held and it has grown each year. Calvin stated that each event, which includes Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter dinners, has shown immense support from families, St. Michael’s and neighbors.
St. Michael’s supports this ministry which helps newly released inmates re-establish themselves into community life.
The Old Testament and gospel swirl in sex and politics. You might say they’re X-rated. David, as he enters Jerusalem, about to become king, spins in ecstasy, dancing to lyres and trumpets, tambourines, castanets and symbols- while off to the side Saul’s daughter seethes. Saul, her father, was the previous king. His daughter is jealous. Saul, himself, will soon fall on his own sword in violent grief. For David, it’s an inaugural ball. For Saul and his daughter, it’s a wake and funeral. Read more here.
A sermon by Fr. Ed Greene
November 22, 1963, was the day President Kennedy was assassinated. Those of us who were alive back then can probably remember exactly what we were doing when we first heard the news. I was in music class at Bowdoin College and the professor announced, “The President has just been shot in Dallas!” September 11, 2001, was the day terrorist planes flew into the World Trade Center. I arrived home after getting physical therapy for an arthritic hip, and my mother had the television on, and we watched in dismay as the first tower collapsed. Do you remember what you were doing?
The prophet Isaiah remembers exactly what he was doing at his time of national calamity. In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple.
Uzziah and Isaiah – two different people with similar-sounding names. Read more…
Here’s a great mystery: WE are already with the Father. WE are loved by God from the beginning. “They were yours from the beginning,” Jesus says. You may remember in Genesis after each day of Creation, God says it is good, it is good, it is very good – the birds of the air, the fish of the sea, and every creepy crawly thing, it is good. And on the sixth day… read on
Last night the church was dark and bare, like the empty tomb. We heard the story of creation, breath moving over the waters, escape from oppression through the desert wilderness, dry bones wanting to turn back, and manna drawing us on to a land of promise. Then the lights came on, bells rung, altar linens and silver vessels re-appeared. Banners are on the walls. We have spring flowers (Yes, they will even come outside).
The resurrection reminds us we come through a history. We are about more than happy, clappy. Mary, Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome came grieving to do the rites of burial. They fretted walking down the road, ‘Who will roll away the rock?.” Read more…