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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Fat Tuesday Lectionary Leanings

Hi friends! Those of us who celebrate Lent will find that our feet hit the ground running as of tomorrow, Ash Wednesday. Or maybe they already are pounding!

Even though I have sworn off fattening sweets, I did today enjoy a local treat, a Paczka (pronounced poonch-kee). I will have to do an extra five miles on the old treadmill, but it was worth it. Living in a Polish-American part of the world has its hazards.

I feel, in the interest of a holy Lent, that I must make a confession: I am going off lectionary for the next several weeks, and am doing a sermon series instead.

Nevertheless, the lectionary texts can be found here. I would love to hear what you all are pondering this week. I am thinking about Jesus and his encounter with Matthew, a tax-collector.


  1. Since I am in a new setting, I am going to go at the temptation scene in this way: what does it tell us about who Jesus is? I'll begin with some of our assumptions and our projections and some views others have of Jesus.
    Children's time will be art images of Jesus, asking them who they think is in the pictures. Or something like that.

  2. We have our annual vestry retreat this Friday-Sat. afternoon. Plus I am preaching at two of the Ash Wed services (still need to write that one, yikes)... but I'm thinking I'm going to preach on: the Milennium Development Goals and connect them with temptations and our Lenten liturgy theme of building prayer cairns...oh my I probably have three sermons right there...I hope I find clarity...

  3. I had a homemade fauschnaut... or 3.

  4. Hi Cheesehead, you and I are living parallel lives! Great minds...

    Paczka are very popular here in River City--every church has its little old Polish ladies churning them out by the dozen this time of year. You;d think River City invented them!

    Yes, I've indulged, but I refuse to say how often, on the grounds that it might incriminate me.

    And I am also going off-lectionary for Lent--well, sort of. I'm preaching on the lectionary Psalms (mostly), for a Lenten Journey Through the Psalms. I've been wanting to preach on the Psalms more, so here's my chance...

    This Sunday it's Psalm 91. The Spotlight will be on the beginning of Lent. Not sure of the direction of the sermon yet; probably something about God's presence, not solving our problems, but being present with us in our struggles. Early days yet--and I'm more focused on Ash Wednesday's meditation, which I haven't written yet, argh!! That one's on healing...

    And a meeting tonight of all nights...

    (running around in circles panicking)

  5. Which direction are you running, Rainbow? I don't want to run into you from the opposite direction.

    Sunday? With Ash Wednesday tomorrow, a Lenten Supper focusing on how to help each other embrace change Thursday, and my Spanish For Ministers homework undone? Aggghh!

    Seriously though, this Lent we are focusing on Doing a New Thing - hence the concern about change during our Thursday night suppers. So, instead of giving up things for Lent we will find new, good (Godly) things to do, like show up every Sunday, increase our giving, attend Bible Study, etc. The plan right now is to use Luke and look at the temptation to take the easier way - sleeping in on Sunday morning, collapsing on the couch Monday evening, holding back giving because you want a new whatever. . . That's my story and I'm sticking to it. :-)

  6. For some reason Luke's story of the temptation of Christ makes me think back to an old Saturday Night Live skit featuring "Uebermann." If you think about it, that's what Christ was tempted to become -- Uebermann, "other," someone operating outside the parameters of our common human existence. And each time, Jesus said No! The good news in this story is that Jesus' No! means a Yes! to his solidarity with us in our weakness and pain and subjection to the vicissitudes of this life. Jesus is truly God With Us.

  7. BTW...even though I live in a heavily Polish part of my state, where Paczki Day is rapidly surpassing St. Patrick's Day in popularity...I really don't care for the things; too much of a muchness. (And I really can't handle the authentic ones with the prune filling.) My German-by-way-of-Poland paternal grandma used to make some little freeform donuts before Lent that I think are marginally better than paczki...but if I may be frank, I would much rather have a nice, steaming stack of buttery Shrove Tuesday pancakes!

  8. Not preaching this Sunday (Presbytery meeting) but for a long time I have seen this story as a mystical "what am I meant to do" episode in the life of JEsus. I have preached it that way at least once--as a way to challenge all of us to ask the same sorts of questions

  9. Cheesehead what are you doing your sermon series on? I am teaching the Christ on Trial bible study and using it for my sermon series, beginning with the encounter with Matthew.

    Man my husband would have loved to have had some of the polish sausage or just sausage of some sort. but I don't let him, bad for the system.

    It has been a lot with Ash Wednesday, and the beginning of Letn, etc.


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