Our Calling and God’s Word Spilling Over

Fifth Sunday after Epiphany         February 10, 2019
Karin Liebster,  Associate Pastor

Isaiah 6:1-13
Psalm 138
1 Corinthians 15:1-11
Luke 5:1-11

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

This church building gives witness to the Scandinavian heritage of the people who built it. We call this the nave, ship, not the sanctuary, holy place. The sanctuary is the space inside the altar rails. But look to the rafters. We are sitting securely protected under the hull of a boat turned upside down, or downside up. Continue reading

Sermon for C Epiphany 2 January 20, 2019

Based on John 2:1-11
Suppose you are at a great party and then you discover that the guy you were sharing raunchy jokes with none other than Jesus himself. Would you leave early, like someone getting off the elevator 20 floors early because you changed its air quality? Would you spin it like a politician caught on a secret recording saying what he or she really thinks? Would it be like after Christmas with all our children and grandchildren when our older grandkids invited me into a game of Cards against Humanity and I discovered they knew things I thought they shouldn’t, and they discovered the same about me? Would it be like a beer hall sociable lately where even a Shakespearean version of the same game led me not to share aloud the card in my hand? Then I had another beer.       Continue reading

Sermon for B Pentecost 25 November 11, 2018

Based on Mark 10:36-44

It was a crowded place, the temple courtyard. Pilgrims came from near and far to make their sacrifices and, fervid with hope that they might be consoled with some strong sense of the holy, at least enough holiness to take them in faith to the end of their days. As is always the case, there are those who need to play to the crowd with acts of self-justification, spreading wide their peacock feathers and making a big show of throwing their offering into the treasury. Continue reading

A Reformation Sunday Sermon after Tree of Life Saturday – October 28, 2018

 Based on Mark 10:46-52

            What should a would-be faithful pastor say today? It is all too much. Just too much. This whole week the shadow side of this nation has been exposed as more evil than we would ever want to imagine. The violence of rhetorical and real bombs and bullets gave way to a mass killing of sisters and brothers at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, the largest event anti-Semitic violence in American history. Then as the usual demonic anti-liturgy began with its victim blaming that people of faith should be armed (!), haters simply amped up on their preferred networks with their anti-Semitic dog whistles about globalism and Jewish funded refugees headed to our –our?–promised land. On and on, the haters believe they have license to extend their toxicity and the talking heads who earn their money by performative outrage continue to stir up fear and hate in the vast innocent public majority. Continue reading