Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sermon: June 27, 2021 – 2 Corinthians 8: 7-15

As I approach this reading from 2nd Corinthians, chapter 8, it strikes me that the ministry of the Apostle Paul has similarities to the online ministry that we and many Churches have exerted during these past fifteen months. In his own day and in his own way, rather than being entirely reliant on in-person gatherings, Paul’s ministry utilized the technologies available to him. Watch at https://youtu.be/uPbQkjcadEw    download PDF: Sermon_27June2021 Any of us who had Bibles with colour plates, can …

Read more

Sermon: June 13, 2021 – 2 Corinthians 5: 6-17

Occasionally, a Sunday Scripture from the Lectionary will sort of stand there, defiantly, as if to dare the preacher to say something about it. And occasionally I will look back at it with my shoulders in full shrug and reply, “like what?” This week’s reading from Paul’s second letter to the Church at Corinth was like that – talking about faith and courage, life in the body vs. eternal life, seeking God’s favour without becoming boastful, and the newness of …

Read more

Orange Shirt Day

Sermon: June 6, 2021 – Acts 15: 7-19

I am writing this sermon four days after hearing of the discovery at the Kamloops Residential School.  At this moment, I carry within me silent, sorrowful, helpless, culpable emptiness, and am seeking the words God wants to enter that silence. Watch at: https://youtu.be/EpDvYajNs5U    PDF download at Sermon_06June2021 So I humbly ask God, “where are you in this?”  For even if I could find no words at all, I know that God is not absent from this scene. We know …

Read more

Sermon: May 30, 2021 – Isaiah 6: 1-8

Sermon: Sunday, May 30, 2021 – Isaiah 6: 1-8 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley Introduction As we begin this service, I invite you to review with me the first half of the Christian year.  We have moved from Advent and the birth of Jesus (Christmas), to the season of Epiphany, a time of revelation and light.  The season of Lent gave time for reflection and self-assessment, Holy Week takes us to Good Friday, the …

Read more

the Cenacle in Jerusalem

Sermon: Pentecost Sunday, May 23 2021 – Acts 2: 1-21

Today we remember the first Christian Pentecost, an event that happened in Jerusalem.  At the time of this recording, a truce has been declared in Gaza and East Jerusalem, and we pause for a moment to pray for peace in that place. Watch at https://youtu.be/qJn5iQlYaT8     Download PDF:Sermon_23May2021_Pentecost I am an unabashed fan of Pentecost, to the point of saying this:  if the festival of Pentecost did not already exist, I think someone would need to invent it.  For when …

Read more

Sermon: May 16, 2021 – Psalm 1

You are like a tree, planted by flowing, cool streams of water that never run dry. Your fruit ripens in its time; your leaves never fade or curl in the summer sun. (Psalm 1:3, The Voice translation) Watch: https://youtu.be/QHHf0GMZ5JU     Download PDF at Sermon_16May2021_final Today’s scripture reading, Psalm 1, presents us with this beautiful mental picture of a tree planted by flowing waters.  It contrasts those who choose to be nourished by God’s refreshing waters– those planted or, in some translations, “transplanted” so that …

Read more

three Sunday Messages, May 2, 2021 – John 15: 1-8

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener (v 1)” says Jesus to his gathered disciples in his farewell address to them, in the 15th chapter of John.  “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit (v 5); No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me”. (v 4) …

Read more

Sermon: April 25, 2021 – 1 John 3: 16-24

Today I’d like to talk about what it means to ABIDE in God’s love.  But a bit of internet Dictionary work tells me I’d better define that term. To me, ABIDE is a very warm word, directly related to the word ABODE.  To ABIDE, to me, is to be very much “at home” – to be in a place, or engaged in a relationship, where falsehood, or societal expectations can fall away, and I can safely be myself.  That, however, …

Read more

Sermon: April 18, 2021 – Luke 24: 13-45

For the past couple of weeks, I have been going through old photos – sorting, culling, grouping by date.  In addition to noticing a broad-based family ability to take dull, badly lit, barely-in-focus photos, I’ve been caught off guard by the emotional impact of this task. Watch at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wYlVe6WYHc   Download PDF: Sermon_18April2021 These captured-in-time glimpses into the people and places and events of my life and the lives of my closest relatives, cause me to revisit not just the extraordinary …

Read more

Sermon: April 11, 2021 – John 20:19-31 and Acts 4:32-35

Sermon: April 11, 2021 – John 20: 19-31 and Acts 4: 32-35 Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore AB – Rev Greg Wooley Each year, on this first Sunday after Easter, the apostle Thomas pushes me to examine his actions; and each year, a different aspect stands out.  Some years I feel drawn to soften the “doubting Thomas” moniker that has been attached to him, for he only asked for the same evidence that the other disciples had received one …

Read more