The Scapegoat and the Terrorist

Year B, Christ the King John 18:33-37 The feast of Christ the King speaks directly to the problem of violence and political power, a problem that has plagued society from its beginnings to the age of terrorism we are living through today. In the Gospel lesson appointed for this...
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Hosanna: A Sermon for the Feast of Dedication

On Saturday last weekend at diocesan convention, I joined with the bishop, clergy, and lay leaders in celebrating the 225th anniversary of the Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island. The bishop chose as the readings for that convention Eucharist the same readings we just heard, which...
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The Widow’s Mite: 24 Pentecost, Year B

The Widow’s Mite Deacon Buck Close November 8, 2015 Mark 12: 38-44 For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on. Today’s gospel is the nearly ideal text for a stewardship sermon. But this...
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Ambition and Service 

A sermon on Mark 10:35-45 and Hebrews 5:1-10 on the 21st Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 24B in the Zabriskie Memorial Church of Saint John the Evangelist on 18 October 2015 Ambition: you either have too much of it or not enough. Those who have too much are criticized for their...
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Guest Preacher: Stephanie Shoemaker

When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars you have set in their courses, What is man that you should be mindful of him? Psalm 8 Today we celebrate God’s glorious order of creation coming ourselves in wonder, and later bringing our beloved...
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The Calling of Matthew

The Calling of Matthew – The Feast of St. Matthew Deacon Buck Close 20 September 2015   He saw a man sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him.     The great Renaissance painter, Caravaggio, immortalized this...
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Baptism and the Cross

Holy Cross Day 13 September 2015 John 12:31-36a Holy Cross Day is not typically a day on which the church celebrates baptisms, but it is, in fact, very appropriate to do so, because baptism does not make any sense apart from the cross. In baptism, we are buried with Christ in his...
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The Syrophoenician Woman (Proper 18B)

I ascribe to what academics call a “high Christology.” I believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, the Second Person of the Trinity. I believe that he was fully human and fully divine, and as a result that Jesus was without sin the entire course of his life. In this regard I am...
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The Go-to Guy for Eternal Life, Year B, 13 Pentecost, Proper 16

All of us have “go-to guys” in our lives: those men and women we turn to whenever we have a particular need or problem. To whom do you go when your internet is down at work? That IT guy. To whom do you go when your sink backs up? That plumber guy. How about eternal life? Who’s...
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Assumption

The Virgin Mary “having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.” To many, “them’s fightin’ words,” as they say, since it opens a can of dogmatic worms, scooped out of the rich soil of the papacy. And how tempting it would be to...
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