November 8, 2018

Editor’s Note:  Here in the US, we just had a national election that demonstrated once again, the different, often polarizing, views that we hold.  This former pastor describes uncomfortable moments during Sunday services when politics and sports got mixed up with religion. / Linda LaScola, Editor ===================== By David Mercer People often mix various aspects of their culture into their religion and call it Christianity, for instance, The 2nd Amendment Isn’t In the Bible  I remember once at prayer time… Read more

November 5, 2018

Editor’s Note: As I read this sermon, originally delivered in a church, it doesn’t seem like a sermon at all, but rather a pleasant lesson on the importance and meaning of friendship.  I bet a lot of sermons currently being preached are a lot like this.  I hope so. Enjoy this final sermon in this series, preceded by an introduction by the author. / Linda LaScola, Editor =========================== By Bob Ripley A month before I took early retirement almost ten years ago,… Read more

November 1, 2018

Editor’s Note: If this former preacher had actually given this as his final sermon, I bet a lot of the congregation would have walked out with him.  Alas, logic is not what brings people to church, so it’s also likely that some in the congregation would have immediately joined another church, with clergy who stuck to the feel-good aspects of faith. / Linda LaScola, Editor ================================ By David Madison, PhD, Biblical Studies The Vulnerabilities of Faith In March 1996, a… Read more

October 29, 2018

Editor’s Note: [Secular Sermon #6] This is one of the more somber sermons in this series.  It’s also more helpful and thought provoking than any sermon I’d expect to hear in any “house of worship” – even in a very liberal one where clergy don’t outwardly encourage belief in God as the path to salvation. Read this to more fully appreciate the one life you have.  /Linda LaScola, Editor ===================== By “RJ Twain” The average American life on TV looks… Read more

October 25, 2018

Editor’s Note: [Secular Sermons Series #5] Here’s another real sermon, though greatly reduced, the writer tells me, from a sermon he gave almost ten years ago, long after he left his ordination in the Presbyterian Church.  He thought that the congregation, which included some of his seminary professors, wasn’t “too shocked” because they had known him since his chaplaincy days. He sure didn’t pull any punches! / Linda LaScola, Editor  ========================== By Chris Highland Christ Presbyterian, Terra Linda, CA, July… Read more

October 22, 2018

Editor’s Note: [Secular Sermon #4] Now we move back into the world of fantasy sermons.  Or perhaps “wishful thinking” is more descriptive. This former youth pastor obviously spent enough time in fundamentalist Christianity to know how to rev up a crowd. If he had actually given this sermon, I think it would have been his last – once the congregation realized they’d been tricked.  /Linda LaScola, Editor ===================== By “Preston” – Sermon Notes (from the sermon I never preached): Good Morning… Read more

October 18, 2018

Editor’s Note:  [Secular Sermon #3] What follows is this former Lutheran pastor’s “best reconstruction” of an Easter sermon he gave about seven or eight years ago.  I’ve heard some clergy say that Easter is the hardest time of the year for them, as they try convincingly to bring Jesus out of the tomb – again. I know The Clergy Project has gotten a rush of new members after Easter.  I think this former pastor handles the resurrection pretty well.  Maybe… Read more

October 15, 2018

Editor’s Note: [Secular Sermon #2] This is a real sermon, recently given by an active UCC pastor and member of The Clergy Project.  He assures me that he changed it enough to make it difficult for him to be identified with the sermon.  In a way, I’m not sure it matters, because I think this is the kind of sermon that liberal pastors can be heard giving on most Sundays. /Linda LaScola, Editor ===================== “Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy… Read more

October 11, 2018

Editor’s Note: I asked several Clergy Project members write a sermon they wish they could have given when their beliefs had changed but they were still in the pulpit.  Another alternative was to write a sermon that they actually gave–that was sufficiently vague or had enough double entendre that they felt comfortable presenting it to their congregation.  Responses varied.  I received some actual sermons, either changed slightly to protect the identity of a current non-believing pastor, or reconstructed from memory… Read more

October 8, 2018

Editor’s Note: This essay, written a few months ago about church sexual abuse, is sadly applicable to the recent Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court hearings.  The essay is hopeful, though, in that it offers a humanistic ten commandments that everyone could live by, irrespective of religious faith or lack thereof. A Canadian former pastor wrote the essay, and a British philosopher wrote the Ten Commandments. /Linda LaScola, Editor ================== By Bob Ripley I take no glee in observing that it has… Read more

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