Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sermon: March 15, 2020 (Lent 3) – John 4: 5-42

A week after our final grade 12 exams, my best friend and I took a trip from Regina to the big city of Vancouver. We were sent with very specific instructions on how to explore the east end of downtown on foot.  Along the south part of this zone is lively Chinatown, at the north edge is gentrified, touristy Gastown, but in order to walk from one to the other you had to go through about 3 blocks that were …

Read moreSermon: March 15, 2020 (Lent 3) – John 4: 5-42

Seven Sacred Teachings and Lent – Tue Mar 10 7 pm

Tony Snow, Indigenous Lead for Chinook Winds Region,  on March 10th at RCMUC led a deep and meaningful time of discussion, inviting us to see how the Seven Sacred Teachings can interact with our observance of Lent.  The seven sacred teachings, broadly held within many Indigenous traditions, are  Love, Respect, Courage, Honesty, Wisdom, Humility, and Truth.  Tony will be presenting additional sessions online at 7 pm on Tuesdays, March 17, 24, 31 and April 7. To register for one of …

Read moreSeven Sacred Teachings and Lent – Tue Mar 10 7 pm

Sermon: March 8, 2020 – John 3: 1-17 (Lent II)

When we were in the Holy Land two years ago, we learned that when a Bible story tells you where it happened, it is worth paying attention, as the topography or history of a place makes all the difference to the stories told there. In today’s reading about Jesus and Nicodemus, it’s not so much about where it happened, as when it happened. And when it happened, was at night. click here for a PDF of this sermon Nicodemus, one …

Read moreSermon: March 8, 2020 – John 3: 1-17 (Lent II)

desolate lands

Sermon: Lent I, March 1 2020 – Matthew 4: 1-11

The 3rd chapter of Matthew, immediately prior to today’s reading, ends with these words: “when Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” click here for PDF Knowing the ministry ahead of Jesus,  we current-day readers may …

Read moreSermon: Lent I, March 1 2020 – Matthew 4: 1-11

Sermon: February 16, 2020 – 1 Corinthians 3: 1-9

Last Sunday night was the annual broadcast of the Academy Awards.  As usual, we tuned in to about half of it and as usual, we’ve seen perhaps two of the films that generated nominees, but that doesn’t lessen our enjoyment of the evening.  It is frustrating that the Academy just can’t bring itself to nominate female directors or non-white actors, which points to bigger issues in the industry and society  around whose stories get told, and by whom, but that …

Read moreSermon: February 16, 2020 – 1 Corinthians 3: 1-9

Sermon: February 9, 2020 – Matthew 5: 13-16

You are the salt of the earth.  You are the light of the world.  There is so much empowerment in today’s reading, the second preaching segment of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. This morning, though, it’s the next part of what Jesus said that insisted I keep coming back to them: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets” said Jesus to the crowd, “I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. For …

Read moreSermon: February 9, 2020 – Matthew 5: 13-16

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

Bow River and 3 Sisters GW

Sermon: December 15, 2019 – Luke 1:46-55 – Advent III

The third Sunday of Advent is typically the Sunday of Mary, mother of Jesus.  It is also, in this year’s Advent exploration of the classical elements of Earth, Air, Fire and Water, chosen to be the Sunday of Water.  These two, Mary and Water, do not come together by accident. click here for PDF Water plays such a key role in scripture: the first words of the Bible, the beginning of the first chapter of Genesis, are “When God began …

Read moreSermon: December 15, 2019 – Luke 1:46-55 – Advent III

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