11 September 2016 – Proper 19: Still at dinner at the house of the Pharisee, the word about what Jesus is doing and who he is addressing spreads to sinners and tax collectors. This is his word of hope to them.
4 September 2016 – Proper 18: Continuing the series of comments Jesus makes while a guest in the house of a Pharisee.The setting is important: the open courtyard in the house makes it possible for people to wander by and look in to see who is invited. And in this case, also to listen in.
28 August 2016 – Proper 17: Jesus is invited to the house of a Pharisee for this first of a series of Gospel lessons delivered there. The first thing he does is to criticize the behavior of the other guests.
14 August 2016 – Proper 15: What will it take to pit father against son, daughter against mother, wife against her mother-in-law? A family vacation just may do it!
24 July 2016 – Proper 12: The disciples as Jesus to teach them to pray as John the Baptist taught his disciples. Given the legacy of the great prayers from Abraham on, they might have been a tad disappointed when Jesus tells them to keep it short and simple.
17 July 2016 – Proper 11: Jesus praises Mary’s choice over Martha’s. I hate it when he does that!
10 July 2016 – Proper 10: Jesus says “Go and do likewise.” Do what, exactly?
3 July 2016 – Proper 9: “Take nothing and depend on others” is at the heart of the commission to the disciples as they prepare the way for Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem. How American is that advice?
19 June & 26 June: Sorry! No recordings while the Rector was away on vacation.
12 June 2016 – Proper 6: The story of the woman anointing the feet of Jesus is one of those rare ones that appears in all four Gospels. This sermon examines the motivation behind her action.
5 June 2016 – Proper 5: Two large processions meet at the gate of a small city, one trying to go out and the other trying to go in. You and I know what a traffic jam is like, and that should be all the “hook” we need to listen to today’s Gospel.
29 May 2016 – Proper 4: That a Roman centurion is the featured character this Memorial Day weekend set off a reverie that led to the consideration of the Christian faith and practice of General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson.
22 May 2016 – C Trinity Sunday: Wisdom “giggles.” You could look it up!
15 May 2016 – C Pentecost: We did something new and unique this year — Lessons and Carols for Pentecost. You can find a full description as a front page post in the May 2016 Archive, available on the home page.
8 May 2016 – Easter 7: Paul and Silas take their mission to Europe and discover that hospitality is an outward and visible sign of the grace of conversion.
1 May 2016 – Easter 6: Assuming Jesus doesn’t ask stupid questions makes the encounter at the pool of Bethesda all the more interesting.
24 April 2016 – Easter 5: “Jesus loves me: the Bible tells me so.” What started out as a simple exploration of one of those places where the Bible tells us so takes an unexpected turn.
17 April 2016 – Easter 4: Reflections on Tabitha/Dorcas, beginning with Emmanuel’s stained glass window depicting her service to young children.
10 April 2016 – Easter 3: We speak of the Road to Damascus and the conversion of Paul. What about the conversion of Ananias?
3 April 2016 – Easter 2: When an angel appears its first words are “Fear Not.” When Jesus appears after the resurrection, he says something entirely different.
27 March 2016 – Easter Sunday: Not a sermon per se but an Easter Morning story. There were technical difficulties with the recording, so it will be posted once it can be rerecorded.
20 March 2016 – Palm Sunday: Since we read both the Palm Sunday Gospel and the Passion According to Luke, there is no sermon.
13 March 2016 – Lent 5: How dare that woman to behave like that! And how dare Jesus let her get away with it!
6 March 2016 – Lent 4: For the second Sunday this Lent the parable practically begs us to identify with a character, and the character that is most like us is not the younger son or the father.
28 February 2016 – Lent 3: The usual interpretation of the parable of the Fig Tree suggests that the tree represents you and me, with the owner desiring us to be fruitful or else! But is that the best way to understand what is going on here?
21 February 2016 – Lent 2: I have waited almost 35 years to reveal this to you: there are chickens in the Bible!
14 February 2016 – Lent 1: It is interesting to contemplate the fact that the things that Jesus is tempted with would help him to accomplish his mission. So why does Jesus refuse the devil’s help?
7 February 2016 — Epiphany Last: The Rev’d Bill Smith preaches as Canon Gatza recovers from parathyroid surgery. Do we, like Jesus, take the time to consult with the law and the prophets before embarking on an enterprise?
31 January 2016 — Epiphany 4: There was just one service prior to the 148th Annual Congregational Meeting of Emmanuel Church, and the short homily leading to it was not recorded.
24 January 2016 — Epiphany 3: “Snowzilla” dumped a record 28″ on our house and the churchyard and so we were snowed out.
17 January 2016 — Epiphany 2 C: Details matter, and understanding the cultural context of a wedding feast and how much wine Jesus actually provides demonstrates the abundance God wishes for all of us.
10 January 2016 — First Sunday After Epiphany: a riff on the prepositional phrase “in bodily form” that Luke alone uses to describe the coming of the Holy Spirit at the Baptism of Jesus.
3 January 2106 — Second Sunday of Christmas C: Emmanuel’s oldest window — depicting the Visit of the Magi — has a mildly interesting story behind it, told in this sermon. If you are acquainted with the books about the stained glass at the National Cathedral, you may notice that my account of Walter Tower’s contributions are at odds with the current story. As one-time Scholar-in-Residence there, I stand by my version. A correction: I mistakenly used the first name Richard for the English Architect George Bodley.
Our Church year begins on the First Sunday of Advent, this year on 29 November 2015. So the first few sermons were actually delivered before the change in calendar year.
22 December 2015 – Advent 4 C: Since we know the whole story, it is easy for us to forget that at the moment, Mary’s situation as an unmarried pregnant woman was quite the scandal. A look at the genealogy of Jesus, however, reminds us that God is able to overlook scandal and make good things come of difficult situations.
13 December 2015 – Advent 3 C: A mock public radio report on the appearance of John the Baptist’s actions at the Jordan and the subsequent responses by the current presidential candidates to his message. The “3…2…1…” restart is standard among audio reporters.
6 December 2015 – Advent 2 C: John the Baptist had all of the people from miles around come to hear him, and they were moved to repentance by his preaching. Who in the 21st century has the power to get us all to listen?
29 November 2015 – Advent 1 C: Finding comfort in the Lights of the season.