Peace is Not Tranquility (A #WGFest2015 Lectionary Reflection)

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  Lectionary Year B — Proper 11 — Mark 6:30-34; 53-56 On Saturday, my youngest son and I spent an afternoon carefully stacking a half-dozen rocks that had been worn smooth and elliptical by the French Broad River that eddied around our knees.  The swift river and its small pockets of whitewater drowned out the world around us [Read More...]

Taking Liberation without Permission: Bree Newsome, #BlackLivesMatters, and the Hemorrhaging Woman (Lectionary Reflection)

Proper 8B — Mark 5:21-43 The woman with the hemorrhage didn’t ask permission. She didn’t wait until the appropriate time. She had suffered long enough. So she took her liberation into her own hands. She broke the rules. And became free. It reminds me so much of Bree Newsome, the courageous activist who took matters [Read More...]

When God Sleeps through Storms (Lectionary Reflection for Mark 4:35-41)

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Proper 7 — Year B – Mark 4:35-41 “Even the wind and the sea obey him,” the awestruck disciples say. Just minutes before, they had been in the most terrible storm of their lives. Out on the open sea, the storm had threatened to swamp the disciples and their boat. They were terrified. Completely undone [Read More...]

The Divine Protest of Pentecost: The Politics of Language and Respectability (Homily for Pentecost, Year B)

By Madison Baran (Flickr Creative Commons Copyright)

The God of Pentecost doesn’t have an official language. This is the shocking revelation of the day of Pentecost, but one often  lost amid the day’s more bombastic metaphors of rushing winds, descending doves and intoxicated disciples with tongues touched by fire. But in a country with a history of suppressing other languages in the [Read More...]

When Things Fall Apart: The Theodicy of Jesus, Judas, and Betrayal (Lectionary Meditation for Easter B7)

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John 17:6-19 — Year B — Easter “Except the one destined to be lost.” In that one tiny clause, Jesus attempts to explain away his failure, the one given to him but was lost. The one that got away. Judas Iscariot. His betrayer. His disciple. His friend. Earlier in John, Jesus had explained exactly what [Read More...]

The Shepherd Who Casts Us Out: A Homily for Good Shepherd Sunday

Creative Commons Copyright by Flickr User Koshy Koshy

Easter 4B — Good Shepherd Sunday — John 10:1-18 The Lectionary only offers a selection of the Good Shepherd discourse this week, but I have included verses 1-10 as well. This homily was written with collaboration and reflection from two the high school students at my local parish. Be honest, when you heard the readings [Read More...]

The Grief of Peter: A Good Friday Soliloquy (Homily)

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I think a lot about that night, the night the soldiers came. In the quiet, I can still hear their steady footfalls approaching, that rhythmic shuffle of their metal breastplates, spear, sword, and shield. When I close my eyes, I can still see their torches blazing like evil eyes warning of coming misfortune. And I [Read More...]

BREAKING NEWS: Protests Turn Violent in Jerusalem

Flickr Copyright by Gonzale

Temple Protests Turn Violent Angry Rioters Smash, Loot Local Businesses Jerusalem — Authorities are searching for the leaders of an anti-government protests that turned violent yesterday, disrupting Jerusalem’s annual Passover observance. The leader of the unauthorized and anarchist demonstration, Jesus bar Joseph of Nazareth, is wanted on suspicion of vandalism, looting, disturbing the peace, and [Read More...]

Vanishing Jesus and the Christ of the Deserted Place (A Lectionary Reflection for Mark 1:29-39)

Epiphany 5B — Mark 1:29-39 When the people most sought him, Jesus ran away. When the people finally got an inkling, a glimpse of who he was, Jesus disappeared. When people at last realized that there was something different about this teacher and healer, Jesus vanished, eager almost in his need to be absent and alone. Unwilling to be [Read More...]

An Ordinary Name: A Reflection for the Feast of the Holy Name

Creative Commons Copy Right by Alan O'Rourke

Back in 2013, a judge blocked a mother’s name for a child on religious grounds. She wouldn’t allow the mother to name her child ‘Messiah,’ because the judge felt it was a name reserved only for Jesus. It was probably the oddest judicial ruling I’d ever heard. It was almost as if the judge believed that names themselves had some sort of special [Read More...]


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