Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sermon: May 26, 2019 – Psalm 67 and John 1: 1-5, 14

“Faith, hope and love are the very nature of God, and thus the nature of all Being.   Each of these Three Great Virtues must always include the other two in order to be authentic: love is always hopeful and faithful, hope is always loving and faithful, and faith is always loving and hopeful.  They are the very nature of God and thus of all Being.  Such wholeness is personified in the cosmos as Christ, and in human history as Jesus.  …

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Sermon: May 19, 2019 – Revelation 21:1-6 and John 13: 31-35

This morning we have heard two readings, both speaking of something NEW: the new commandment of love that Jesus gives his disciples in the gospel of John, and the vision of a new heaven and a new earth, in the book of Revelation. click here for PDF of this sermon Occasionally in our lives, things emerge that are brand-new.  A new learning or a new opportunity comes out of nowhere and transforms the path we are on, or, conversely,  something …

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Norwich Cathedral

Sermon: May 12, 2019 – Psalm 23 and John 21

It was my great joy to spend Holy Week this year in the UK, at Norwich Cathedral.  What drew me there, was a series of lectures by Rev. Dr. Malcolm Guite, a Minister, Poet, Chaplain and Musician based at Cambridge University who had been invited for the week.  Each evening from Monday to Thursday, and then mid-day on Good Friday, Malcolm would follow a similar pattern: some introductory thoughts, then read one of his scripture-based sonnets, reflect on it then, …

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Sermon: May 5, 2019 – Acts 9 and John 21

Sermon: May 5, 2019 – Acts 9: 1-6 and John 21: 1-14 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley click here to download PDF This morning feels very much like the first school day back after an extended summer holiday, with the task in front of me the classic “What I did on my summer vacation” assignment.    And I suspect that parts of sermons for months to come, will have a bit of that sense to …

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Unforgetting – Good Friday service 2019

Rev. Bill Millar writes, “As part of the “Open Out” process at Ralph Connor in which we explored the call to diversity in the future, we identified the need to recognize and celebrate the diversity of the past. This Good Friday worship service was part of that process. click here for full PDF document “The evening was rainy and bitterly cold … but as the service ended a flock of geese flew in formation above us, from west, always a symbol …

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Sermon: January 27, 2019 – 1 Corinthians 12

Sermon: January 27, 2019 – 1 Corinthians 12 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley final sermon before sabbatical! click here for pdf In a way, I hardly needed to do a sermon this morning, because the Apostle Paul has already preached one, including an extended illustration, in the reading from 1st Corinthians 12.  Or should I say, Paul has preached two sermons, weaving them together in a way that probably seemed like a good idea …

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Sermon: January 20, 2019 – Psalm 36: 5-10

Sermon: January 20, 2019 – Psalm 36: 5-10 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley click here for PDF Scripture readings have a personality all their own.   And in approaching them, the preacher does well to approach in the way that an artisan would approach a piece of stone or a block of wood, asking first what it wants to be, attentive to what needs to emerge from this material rather than trying to force their …

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Sermon: January 13, 2019 – Isaiah 43 and Luke 3

Sermon: January 13, 2019 (Baptism of Jesus) – Isaiah 43 and Luke 3 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley click here to download PDF One of the complaints frequently heard about very holy places in the world, is how crowded and commercialized they get.  And indeed, our visit to the Jordan River last spring was hardly what you’d call “solitary.”  In the dusty parking lot there were 20 or more tour buses, and room for …

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Sermon: Epiphany Sunday, January 6, 2019 – Matthew 2: 1-12

As we see the Magi progress through the key journey of their lives – starting at their comfortable, settled status quo, then being called out of that and ending up in the very presence of Jesus, the light of the world, the Word made Flesh – we may see our lives in a new way. I’m not suggesting you head out and get fitted for a superhero costume…

Sermon: December 23, 2018 (Advent 4) – Luke 1: 26-45

Sermon: December 23, 2018 (Advent IV) – Luke 1: 26-45 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley <PDF feature not presently available> Three years ago, when preaching on Ruth and Naomi, I mentioned in passing a movie-rating test commonly known as the Bechdel test… and on this fourth Sunday of Advent, with its focus on Mary and Elizabeth, a little deeper excursion into this test is warranted. Essayist Rebecca Beatrice Brooks describes the test and its …

Read moreSermon: December 23, 2018 (Advent 4) – Luke 1: 26-45