Sermon for the Third Sunday in Lent, March 7, 2021

Vicar Sergio Rodriguez

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
“God spoke all these words: I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, you shall have no other gods besides me (Exod 20:1-3).”

As I consider the awesome sight of God’s descent upon Mount Sinai to speak these words of the covenant, I wonder if the people felt a sense of joy at hearing these words of life. Fire and smoke, thunder, lighting and sounds of trumpets signaled to the people encamped around the Mount that God has come to bring order into the desert chaos. God has come to set forth the perimeters of our life with each other, with each other’s treasured belongings and loved ones and with him. Continue reading

Sermon for the First Sunday in Lent, February 21, 2021

Sergio Rodriguez, Vicar

“Jesus, our technicolor Grace Coat: Lent as our restoration, not privation”

Text: I have set my bow in the clouds…and when the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant…and the waters again shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. (Gen 9:13-15)

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ who was in the wilderness with wild beasts and angels ministering to him. Amen.

Amid the rattling of frozen water pipes, the hiss of natural gas, and the sirens of emergency response vehicles, I wondered as I sat my frigid recliner if this artic storm encapsulated the Lenten season; if perhaps the penitential like Pandemic season really needed another penitential like storm. The Spirit traded the harsh heat of the wilderness with the bitter cold and the bitter loneliness of this pandemic time. Instead of being surrounded by wild beasts or angels in ministering, many of us had the company of hungry cats, pampered pooches, and loved ones opening their doors and cupboards. After this forty-day-like week, I could not help but turn to the wise and heartwarming sentiment of Pastor Larson concerning the central feature of our ancient discipline of Lent: “I’ve decided that I’ve given up Lent for Lent because it has been Lent since Last March and not even Jesus wants a redundant Lent…because Lent is dependence on only one thing: grace y’all.” In other words, our forty-day journey that is Lent is a journey in, through and towards grace. For Lent is our restoration and not deprivation. Lent is God’s grace y’all and a grace that intends to endow the world with a type of grace that restores our relationship with God, with each other, every living creature and the earth we stand upon. Continue reading

Sermon for the 5th Sunday after Epiphany – February 7, 2021

Sergio Rodrigues, Vicar

“Running, Praying, Being: Christ-Centered Joy in times of Dis-ease”

Text: Mark 1: 35 In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed

Grace to you and peace from God our Creator and the Lord Jesus Christ, who went out to a secluded place to pray. Amen.

Isaiah’s description of fainting and exhausted youths during the time of the Exile describes the totalizing extent of our weary condition today. We are in a collective exile from the tissues and the sinews of our social life and have grown weary of its effects. Ed Prideaux of the BBC, made a this poignant observation concerning the nature of this massive fatigue. We are experiencing Mass trauma and this experience covers the entire extent of our life together like God stretching the sky heavens over creation below. Continue reading

Sermon for Fourth Sunday after Epiphany   January 31, 2021   

Karin Liebster, Associate Pastor

Deuteronomy 18:15-20
Psalm 111
(1 Corinthians 8:1-13 not used)
Mark 1:21-28

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

“Jesus taught them as one having authority.”

Who are the people who we grant the authority to make pronouncements that will change my life, guide me in my life, correct me in my ways and the choices I make. Take a doctor for example. We prefer to seek out an authority in their field so that we get a clear, trustworthy diagnosis. We are willing to accept regimens of treatment and projections about our outlook if the word comes from a source that speaks with authority. Continue reading