Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sermon: October 3, 2021 – Ephesians 2: 13-22

Such dividedness. Insiders and outsiders.  Ethnic and Religious splits. Positions strongly held, to the point of erecting walls of hostility between one another. Differences, even, in what is considered authoritative and true. Watch at https://youtu.be/C9XfrJ_u-7o     Download PDF here: Sermon_03October2021 No, I’m not talking about Alberta or Canada or the US in the year 2021, though I clearly could be.  This paragraph describes the situation addressed by the second chapter of Ephesians. Traditionally considered a letter of the apostle Paul, …

Read more

Sermon: September 19, 2021 – Mark 9: 30-37

Today’s gospel reading from the 9th chapter of Mark has three parts to it: Jesus delivers troubling news about his death, which his disciples fail to understand; those same disciples quarrel and jostle for position; and Jesus brings a child into their midst, to illustrate just how different his new conception of power is from their tired old views. View at https://youtu.be/escx5Jmmfso      Download PDF: Sermon_19September2021 Let’s look at these three portions, with an intention to experience the wisdom …

Read more

Sermon: August 29, 2021 – James 1: 17-27

The book of James is one of those books you probably know a couple of quotes from, even if you couldn’t specifically place them.  James 2:20 says that “Faith without works is dead” and in today’s reading, James 1:22, working the same angle, urges the reader/listener to “Be Doers of the Word, and not Hearers only.” Watch at https://youtu.be/C6Pa_0VBiK8  Download PDF at Sermon_29August2021 Even for those who aren’t overtly religious, these quotes ring true.  The things that we say are …

Read more

Sermon: August 8, 2021 John 6: 35, 41-51

“I am the bread of life” says Jesus. “Whoever comes to me shall neither hunger nor thirst”  And the crowd says, “yes, Lord Jesus, fill us with your love.” Oh, that’s not how it goes?  I’m sure that’s what they would have said. Well how about, “I am the bread of life” says Jesus. “Whoever comes to me shall neither hunger nor thirst”  And the crowd says, “yes, Jesus, give us this sustenance, that we might share it with others.” …

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

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

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

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

HAPPY EASTER! Easter Sunday Sermon, April 4 2021 – John 20: 1-18

Easter Sunday, of all the Sundays of the Christian year, we proclaim life.  We proclaim hope and renewal and emergence and all things that help our spirits to arise.  We proclaim the glory or resurrection. On this day of all days, I do not want to say one thing that will lessen the good news of Jesus Christ, or the unedited power of resurrection life.  I do, however, want to name an important reality of the Good News: that is, …

Read more

desolate lands

Sermon: Lent I, February 21 2021 – Mark 1: 9-15

Jesus, age thirty-ish, had a new future opened to him.  Baptized by his cousin John, a heavenly voice named and claimed Jesus, and he knew that his life was going to be radically different from then on.   What exactly was this going to look like?  He did not know, but he and God both knew that he needed to find out.  According to the gospel of Mark, the Holy Spirit either led him or propelled him into the barren wilderness …

Read more