Worship From Home: February 7, 2021

Here is the video and the sermon podcast for the February 7 worship service from First Christian St. Paul. Continue reading Worship From Home: February 7, 2021

Worship From Home: January 31, 2021

Here is the video and the sermon podcast for the January 31 worship service from First Christian St. Paul. Continue reading Worship From Home: January 31, 2021

Was Jesus a Progressive Rabbi?

Before I say anything, take a look at this  graphic. I’ve seen a few people on Facebook share this image from theologian Benjamin Corey and I have to say that it bothers me.  Maybe Corey thinks he is sharing the gospel truth, but I don’t think he’s doing that.  He is peddaling a Jesus in his own image, one that surprisingly likes what Corey likes and hates what Corey hates.  Which means he isn’t doing anything that different than what conservative Christians do with Jesus. When I made my journey from evangelicalism to mainline/progressive Christianity in the 90s, I was … Continue reading Was Jesus a Progressive Rabbi?

The Pastor With Broken Wings

One of the things that any pastor of a congregation has to do is visit people where they live.  First Christian has a number of folks who are either in nursing homes or assisted living. Some pastors love visiting with people.  A number of congregations have what are called Visitation Pastors.  These are usually retired pastor who go around visiting the sick and shut-ins.  Most of the visitation pastors that I know tend to be rather jovial and extroverted people. But First doesn’t have a visitation pastor.  Correction, they do and it happens to be me. Visitation is a challenge … Continue reading The Pastor With Broken Wings

Sermon: “But We Had Hoped…”

Luke 24:13-35 Third Sunday of Easter May 4, 2014 First Christian Church Mahtomedi, MN   In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street, where one was reading Luther’s preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while the leader was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ alone for salvation; and an assurance was given me that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of … Continue reading Sermon: “But We Had Hoped…”

Sermon: “The Healing Power of Collard Greens”

This is a sermon I preached on Easter evening in 2005.  It is the text I will be preaching on this Sunday for the Third Sunday in Easter. Luke 24:13-35 April 10, 2005 Community of Grace Christian Church St. Paul, MN I love good food, and it probably shows. I consider myself lucky to be born in the family that I’m in, because I grew up with two wonderful cooking traditions. On my father’s side is the African American tradition of the Deep South. It’s a tradition of fried chicken, collard greens, mac and cheese, cornbread stuffing and sweet potato … Continue reading Sermon: “The Healing Power of Collard Greens”

Sermon: “Things Can Only Get Better”

“Things Can Only Get Better” Isaiah 11:1-10 Second Sunday of Advent December 8, 2013 First Christian Church Mahtomedi, MN When I Daniel and I moved to our house in North Minneapolis back in 2007, there was a large Silver Maple tree in the backyard. This tree was quite fruitful, because we were always getting rid of little saplings that seemed to appear everywhere in our yard. Three years later, we decided to expand our house. We also learned the maple tree was diseased, which meant it was susceptible to falling over. So, we called a service and had the mighty … Continue reading Sermon: “Things Can Only Get Better”

Repost: We Can’t Be Friends

First off, welcome to all the new visitors who saw my post on Freshly Pressed. Below is a post from last year.  It was about 20 years ago, that I attended a large Baptist church in Washington, DC. The church was an odd mix, or at least it would be odd today. Evangelicals and liberals were somehow able to worship together, along side a healthy dose of members from Latin America and Asia. The church decided at some point to hire a pastor to the join the good-sized multi-pastor staff. The person chosen was a woman with great pastoral care … Continue reading Repost: We Can’t Be Friends

On Holy Friendships

My thoughts these days are drifting towards relationships, or the lack thereof in churches. I’ve been thinking about this in light of a recent blog post on CivilPolitics.org on the dearth of cross-party friendships.  The post linked to a longer article in the Chronicle of Higher Education on the issue.  The author, Neil Gross notes that such friendships have benefits for the whole of society: President Obama last month took a group of Republican senators to dinner at the Jefferson Hotel, in Washington, to discuss the sequestration crisis and a wide range of other policy matters. The next day he … Continue reading On Holy Friendships