Let Them Grow Together: On Gaza, Migrants, Refugees, Wheat and Weeds (A Homily)

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Proper 11 — Year A — Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43 A few weeks ago, I asked my boys to help me pull weeds in the garden. For me, I have been trained over 33 years to know what’s a weed and what’s not. I can look at my tiny plot of dirt and I can see [Read More...]

Dirt is Resurrection and God is a Bad Farmer (Homily for the Parable of the Sower)

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Year A + Proper 10 + Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23 I love dirt. I love the way it smells early in the morning, still damp with summer dew. I love the way it feels between my toes when I walk on it after the sunsets, the warmth of the stars still radiating through the soles of [Read More...]

The Hope in Our Wounds: A Homily for Easter 2A

[Open with dialogue with congregation about wounds] Some wounds never really heal. When I was a journalist, it was my job to bear witness to these kinds of open wounds that life inflicts on the unsuspecting. Like the mother who welcomed her son home in a flag-draped coffin. Or the parents of the teenagers who [Read More...]

Holy Saturday and Harry Potter: On Tombs, Thestrals, and the Descent into Hells

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In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, author J.K. Rowling introduces readers to one of the singular best magical creatures ever created — the thestral. These magical creatures — compared to something like skeletal horses — are invisible to most, save those who have looked upon death, understood it and internalized it. Thestrals [Read More...]

Disciples in the Darkness: Joseph of Arimathea, Loss of Meaning, and the Last Words of Jesus (A Good Friday Homily)

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Good Friday — John 18:1-19:42 — Psalm 22 — Isaiah 52:13-53:12 It is finished. How do you hear these final words of Jesus tonight? Is his voice exhausted and trembling as he walks through the dark doorway of death? Is there relief in his words as he realizes the long ordeal of his arrest, torture, [Read More...]

An Antidote to Anxiety: A Homily for Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving Day Homily — Matthew 6: 25-33 (Due to confusion at my parish, in the Prayer Book, and in the BCP iPhone app, I ended up preaching the Thanksgiving lectionary for Year B rather than Year C).  I’ll never forget the first day my wife went back to work after we had our first son. [Read More...]

The Divisive Love of God: Homily for Proper 15C (Luke 12:49-56)

Proper 15C — Luke 12:49-56 As a parent of two little boys who in one breath dearly love each other and, in the next, dearly love to pester each other, I can’t say I was thrilled when I read the Gospel text for today, much less to have to preach on it. This text mocked [Read More...]

The Shameful Neighbor: Food Stamps, Stereotypes and the War on the Hungry (A Homily)

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Proper 12 — Year C — Luke 11:1-13 There is no war on poverty in this country. There is no war on hunger. Instead, there is a war on the poor and a war on the hungry. Politicians today are targeting and bargaining away the food on the tables of the poor in the name [Read More...]

Jesus Doesn’t Want You to be a Good Samaritan: Lectionary Reflection for Proper 10C

For three unconventional retellings of this parable to enliven the well-worn story, visit here (the Immigrant Samaritan), here (the God Samaritan), or here (the Wrong Samaritan) Proper 10 – Year C – Luke 10:25-37 Jesus doesn’t really want you to be the good Samaritan. At least, that’s not the point of his story in this [Read More...]

Calling Down Questions: Homily for Proper 9, June 30

On July 29, I was ordained to the transitional diaconate in Northern California with eight other wonderful people, including two others from my sending parish, Grace Fairfield. The following day, I got to preach this sermon in the same church where I was confirmed and where both my children were baptized. It was good to [Read More...]


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