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Sunday Services

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Sermon

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The Rev. Kate Sefton

I want to repeat a part of today’s second reading:
4:6 For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
4:7 But we have this treasure in clay jars, so that it may be made clear that this extraordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us.
4:8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair;
4:9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;
4:10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies.

Afflicted but not crushed.
Perplexed but not driven to despair.
Persecuted but not forsaken.
Struck down but not destroyed.
….so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies.

In this reading, at the same time that he is stressing the importance of our mission to make visible the life of Jesus, Paul acknowledges the frailty of our human existence. Our physical bodies are compared… Continue reading

The Rev. Christy Laborda Harris

 

 

This Sunday is known as Good Shepherd Sunday. We are treated to the 23rd Psalm where we declare that the Lord is our shepherd and cares for us, God’s sheep, and to the 10th chapter of John’s Gospel where Jesus declares himself the Good Shepherd and us his sheep.

Commentator Nancy Blakely advises, “…consider the tricky issue of being called a sheep. Some parishioners bristle at the idea of being thought of as dumb and mindless.” Another commentator described these fluffy creatures as, “at turns affectionate, stubborn, stupid, aimless, passive, easily startled, and always hungry [I resemble that remark!]. Sheep are prone to wander off and become easily vulnerable” (Kent French).

But more seriously, the 23rd Psalm with this image of God or Jesus as the shepherd who cares for and protects us resonates deeply with many of us as individuals and with the Church at large. Psalm 23 is one of those pieces of scripture that even the most unchurched person probably recognizes and might even be able to recite a few words.

The power of this psalm lies in it naming the darkness of our… Continue reading

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