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Showing posts from August, 2016

15th Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 22, Year C

Free Grace, Undying Love

Readings: Jer 2:4-13; Isa; 81:1, 10-16; Heb 13:1-8, 15-16; Luke 14:1, 7-14

I had a wonderful family from Newfoundland in one of my parishes. They were larger than life in every way. They loved to have a good time; they also loved to be at church. Their faith was extremely important to them. One of their sons fell in love and was to be married. A church wedding was important to both young people. The young woman’s family was not happy with the match to say the least. They considered themselves to be of a much higher station in life. It made for an interesting wedding.

The church was packed with people from both sides of the family as well as with parishioners. It was not difficult to see which family was which. That became especially apparent at the reception, which was held in a posh private club of which the bride’s family were members. There was, of course, a head table with the young people and their wedding party. It was a true mixture of both …

14th Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 21, Year C

Bent Out of Shape

Readings: Jeremiah 1:4-10; Psalm 71:1-6; Hebrew 12:18-29; Luke 13:10-17

After eighteen years of being bent over in pain, the woman could scarcely remember any other way of seeing the world. To see anything but the ground, she had to cock her head like a bird. Even that twisting of her head caused enormous pain. What an agony it was to be “unable to stand up straight”, to be unable to look another person in the eye. She went as usual on the Sabbath to the synagogue to worship, but this time there was a special excitement in the place. A Galilean preacher and prophet, Jesus, had arrived in town and would be teaching there. She had heard stories about him – not only about his teachings about God’s grace, but about how he went about healing the sick. She tried not to get her hopes up. After all, her life had been one disappointment after another.

As she entered the synagogue, the place was buzzing with excitement, but a hush fell over the place as soon as Jesus …