Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

The Little White Church on Main Street, Canmore, Alberta

Sermon: July 3, 2022 – Luke 10: 1-11, 16-17

A few times in my life, I have taken on the task of doing door-to-door fundraising, most often for a health-related charity. As an introvert, door-knocking not number one on my list of “things I like to do” but so long as I was clear on the cause, especially if I had a personal connection to the cause and perhaps even a first-hand story to tell, it was doable.  I will say that it became both more easily doable – …

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Sermon: June 26, 2022 – Galatians 3: 23-29

When bad news & good news are intertwined, what do we hear? Download PDF:  Sermon_26June2022  Watch: https://youtu.be/nQXKlcqedLI Seventeen years ago, when I was coaching my son’s Little League baseball team, one of his teammates was a really athletic boy who was fairly new to baseball, and whose self-image was, shall we say, “a work in progress”.  As coaches, we were encouraged to help each child develop confidence at a number of different positions, including pitcher if they were so inclined, …

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Sermon: June 12, 2022 – 1 Kings 17: 8-16

Today’s reading from 1st Kings, the encounter of the prophet Elijah and the Widow at Zarephath, is a story that invites us to see the big picture, and to come right up close as well. At first glance, there’s just the three characters, a crucial need, and a moral to the story.  There’s the prophet Elijah, a widow and her son, and the desperate need for food.  When a perpetual supply of ingredients is provided by God so that there …

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Sermon: May 29, 2022 – Acts 16: 16-34

“The true measure of your character is what you do when nobody’s watching.” First attributed to Charles Caleb Colton nearly 200 years ago, there have been versions of this quote repeated far and wide since then, most notably by legendary UCLA Basketball Coach John Wooden, who wanted his players to understand that integrity matters off the court and on the court.   As an aside, I think of a quote attributed to Abraham Lincoln, “Don’t believe everything you read on the …

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Sermon: May 15, 2022 – John 21: 12-19

Just before I start, I want to set the stage a bit.  Today’s sermon is not set in a general “somewhere”; this one is situated in a particular place.  So imagine with me the risen Christ, and some of his disciples, sharing breakfast on the rocky beach at Tabgha, in Galilee.  In this place, Jesus had walked and talked with the disciples and now the risen Christ and Simon Peter have some one-on-one time, talking about Peter’s role in the …

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Sermon: April 24, 2022 – John 20: 19-31

Occasionally, something happens in one’s life, or in the shared experience of a community, that forever changes how a scripture lesson will be read. Watch at https://youtu.be/7MEmgCLkpXM  Download PDF: Sermon_24April2022 For me, a scripture whose interpretation was changed by an event is today’s gospel reading about Jesus entering a closed gathering of disciples one week, and revisiting them a week later when Thomas was with them.  And the event that changed how I read these words, was the early days …

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Easter Sunday, April 17, 2022 – John 20: 1-18 and Isaiah 65: 17-25

This is the day of resurrection. The gloom of Good Friday is replaced by a glorious new day, the body laid in the tomb after the crucifixion is replaced, miraculously, by Christ arisen.  And so this morning we celebrate with the Easter response, Alleluia, Christ is Risen!  Christ is Risen Indeed, Alleluia! Watch at https://youtu.be/Yw1kuMIHsMM   Download PDF: Sermon_17April2022_EasterRundle Those of you who were at our Palm Sunday service one week ago – or saw it online – will recall …

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Sermon: March 20, 2022 – Luke 13: 1-9 – Lent III

Our hearts break each time we see or read or hear about cruel, heartless, targeted violence, wherever and whenever the circumstances.  Most recently, the newsfeeds have been mostly from Ukraine, and the world continues to reach out to those who are targeted while also denouncing the Russian power-mongers who are unleashing the violence. Our hearts break for the ongoing story of missing and murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit persons, their families and communities, and the individuals and systems that …

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Sermon: Sunday, March 13, 2022 – Lent II – Luke 9: 28-43a

A reading from the gospel of Luke, chapter 9 (NRSV): 9:28 Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. 9:29 And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. 9:30 Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. 9:31 They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about …

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Sermon: March 6, 2022 – Luke 4: 1-13 – Lent I

As many of you will recall, three years ago – at this time of year – I was on sabbatical.  There are lots of “how to” guides on planning a ministry sabbatical, which I found somewhat helpful about 18 months prior to the time, but once it got closer I needed different, more personal guidance. Melissa Bane Sevier is a Christian Minister, photographer and blogger, whose “contemplative viewfinder” commentary on the Sunday lectionary I have enjoyed for many years.   Just …

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