Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sea of Galilee

Sermon: January 19, 2020 – John 1: 29-42

Two weeks ago, we marked the festival of the Epiphany, based around Matthew’s recollections of the Magi coming to adore the Christ child.  Today, our gospel lesson fast forwards thirty years, and switches authors from Matthew to John, but many of the same story elements remain. Click here for a PDF of this sermon The Magi were well trained in matters of the Spirit.  Either they were Zoroastrian priests or trained in what we would call astronomy and astrology, combining a …

Read moreSermon: January 19, 2020 – John 1: 29-42

Sermon: January 12, 2020 – Acts 10: 34-43

Cozy, predictable circles of care, are a good thing. click here for a PDF of this sermon Our twins developed a circle of best friends when they were in grade 3.  Twenty three years later, that group still stays in regular contact, and when they get together at Christmas when everyone’s back in the city, it’s like they were never apart.  Their shared history and acceptance of one another’s transitions through childhood, adolescence and young adulthood is a beautiful, important …

Read moreSermon: January 12, 2020 – Acts 10: 34-43

Norwich Cathedral

Sermon – Epiphany Sunday, January 5, 2020 – Matthew 2: 1-12

Have you ever been somewhere, but not exactly known why you were there? No, I’m not talking about going into a room to get something then forgetting what it was before getting there, an increasingly familiar experience for me as time marches on.  < Click here for PDF of this sermon > What I’m aiming at here, is feeling compelled to travel somewhere, or enroll in a seminar or workshop, or attend a public event, with only a vague and …

Read moreSermon – Epiphany Sunday, January 5, 2020 – Matthew 2: 1-12

Sermon: December 22, 2019 – Matthew 1: 18-25 – Advent IV

A word study isn’t generally the snappiest way to begin a sermon, but there’s a word in the story of Joseph that’s worth unpacking, in this Sunday when we look at the “earthy” story of Joseph and Mary and Jesus and God.  It’s the Greek word, Tekton. Click here for PDF In the lands around Lake Galilee, near where Jesus grew up, there’s an abundance of buildings that look just the same: greyish-black brick.  If you didn’t know better, you’d …

Read moreSermon: December 22, 2019 – Matthew 1: 18-25 – Advent IV

Sermon: December 8, 2019 – Advent 2 – Matthew 3: 1-12

Sermon: December 8, 2019 – Advent 2, the Sunday of Fire – Matthew 3: 1-12 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley This was a hard sermon, to even get the first word onto the page. On Saturdays and Sundays, I am a creature of habit. Unless I have a wedding or funeral or some other immovable commitment, sermons get written at home on the first half of Saturday.  I get up the same time, I …

Read moreSermon: December 8, 2019 – Advent 2 – Matthew 3: 1-12

Sermon: Candlelight Service of Remembrance, Dec 5 2019

6 Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, beloved,[e] whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about[f] these things. 9 Keep on doing the things that …

Read moreSermon: Candlelight Service of Remembrance, Dec 5 2019

Sermon: December 1, 2019 – Advent 1 – Isaiah 11: 1-10

A shoot, growing from the stump of Jesse. How appropriate, in this year when we’ve chosen to build our Advent themes around the classical elements of wind-fire-water-and-earth, to begin with a vivid visual metaphor from nature, of the kind of tenacious, powerful leadership that we see in Jesus Christ. click here for PDF Rather than going immediately to words, let’s spend time “seeing” this stump and wondering about it, because the varied ways we visualize this stump of Jesse and …

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Sermon: Reign of Christ, Nov 24, 2019 – Colossians 1: 15-20

Most of us are familiar with discovering an idea or a technology, that is “radically new.”  A well-worded phrase gives us a new way of conceiving things, or a new technique or technological gadget gives us a radically different way of approaching a problem, and we go forward enlightened in a new way. click here for PDF This week’s reading from the 1st chapter of Colossians, presents us not with something that is “radically new” but rather, something that is …

Read moreSermon: Reign of Christ, Nov 24, 2019 – Colossians 1: 15-20

Sea of Galilee

Sermon: November 17, 2019 – Isaiah 65: 17-25

What are our longings?  What do we yearn for? This is what that the writer of Isaiah 65 was wrestling with, as he searched for Divine hope for the next steps of his people’s journey. click here for PDF Isaiah is a tricky book to pin down.  Though named for “a” prophet, as it appears to have been written by a collection of prophetic authors – at least three, perhaps more – spanning several generations of the people of Judah.  …

Read moreSermon: November 17, 2019 – Isaiah 65: 17-25