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Friday, March 30, 2012

11th Hour Preacher Party: The Tongue of a Teacher


The Journey of Holy Week begins....

so, I had an entire post here, but when I updated something via my iPad, the entire post disappeared - except the comments. sooooo


here is the abreviated version.

It's almost Palm/Passion Sunday in this part of the world, and in other parts it is already over and Holy Week has begun.

Where ever you are on this journey, pause a moment, breath, and know that you will find support here.

78 comments:

  1. Actually, it is bedtime where I am - so all y'all keep the party going - I'll leave the kettle on for tea and join you again when it's morning in my zone.

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  2. I am up but I am not preaching Sat or Sun. I am preaching the Vigil next Sat.

    May we all find strength and ways of living through this next week. You are all in my prayers.

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  3. The picture says it all -- it's a long hard climb up the mountain. But we WILL find the risen, transfigured Christ at the top!
    My talks for the Good Friday 3 hours are done (12 000 words, including the readings!) and I now have to sort the music and prayers for each reading.
    Palm Sunday sermon done but there's a long procession tomorrow which will be exhausting on its own. Weekday sermons done in note form and Maundy Thursday gradually getting there. But I am expected to visit all the housebound before Easter, which gives me just 2 days as I will not give up my day off (except for the evening service).
    I've never done this all on my own before and am close to exhaustion already.
    Hot coffee about to be made and my ever-caring husband has gone out to get hot cross buns. Mostly for those who will be making crosses just now, but I hope to grab one for myself! Would you like some too?

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  4. wow Pat, that is a lot for one week, not surprised that you are tired.

    tomorrow we are having an all-age Easter in an hour service, including communion. Idea comes from walk through holy week Service is finished, no sermon, and tasks allocated to the children and teens I have been told are coming.
    My preference is to look at each part of the story, but with Easter a four day weekend, and the start of school holidays, attendance is patchy, especially for those with children. The past few weeks I have preached on aspects of the holy week story, and we will have a reflective service on Thursday evening and a service Friday morning, as well as Sunrise and regular worship on Sunday; so still plenty of opportunity for people to look at various parts of the story. So tomorrow it is an overview of the eight days from Palms to resurrection.
    Now to finalish planing the adult ed. session for after worship tomorrow.

    Here Daylight Savings ends tonight, which means an extra hour of sleep. And some weeks I could really do with an extra hour on Saturday night :)
    I can always start on one of the services for next week.

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  5. 10.30 pm, Saturday time, so finishing a little earlier than usual, and I am looking forward to a cup of tea, watching some TV and an extra hour sleep.

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  6. Pat, I find that visiting the homebound generally gives me more energy than it burns up but I feel your pain. Here, I only have about four. At my last parish, it was more like 15.

    One day at a time is how I am taking this week so I'm concentrating on tomorrow's Palm Sunday service. We moved the reading of the Passion to the end of the service which makes Mk 11:1-11 the sermon text. I am going to talk about how carefully planned the steps of the entry into the city were, how Jesus did everything possible to point out who he was without actually making a banner, that the people saw his message and cried out to be saved. This is the triumph in the entry.

    Then I read in the Christian Century yesterday that one of the main reasons cited for not going to church is that people want to be certain. They are looking for a faith that has all the answers. I think added to that is that people want *their* certainty. They know how they want it to go and they are seeking a church that will confirm that for them. So, too, were the people of Jerusalem. Jesus gave them all the signs that he is Messiah but he didn't grant them the Messiah they were certain would come. So, their plea to be saved was political rather than spiritual and thus it was easy to turn on him a few days later.

    And that's all I have for now. I'm off to a parish work day and then home to do something about my own yard before I lose a dog in the grass (they are not small dogs). Please, God, don't let it rain!

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    1. I am fascinated by the idea that people avoid church because they want certainty. I started attending church as an adult in part because I wanted to wrestle with questions, and then left and eventually found a new church because the first one didn't really wrestle much. And now -- still wrestling, and aware that many in my congregation would like more in the way of certainty.

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    2. This is interesting, especially when you see the large numbers attending churches which provide unequivocal answers and allow no debate.

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  7. Good morning,

    Aaaaah Holy week. I am a bit anxious, this is the first high holy days of my pastorate there and I don't want to mess it up. I am not a "We've always done it this way" kind of pastor but I do want to respect their traditions.

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    1. I feel your pain - it's my first Holy week here as well. My tension is more between my desire to bring drama to the week, to really engage in the experience and my staunchly German and Norwegian congregations' less emotional worship style.

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    2. Oh Ramona,

      I'm from the midwest and I am very familiar with the stoicism of the German's and Norwegians. Garrison Keillor does not exaggerate in his descriptions of them. Just know if they are not reacting on the outside, it doesn't me that they are not feeling anything on the inside.

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  8. I am off to another all day Saturday training event. At least this one is only about 30 mins away! I just realized that from March 10 to May 12 there are only two Saturdays with nothing on them. One of them is next week! I think, for this year, I'll be thankful for my tradition that does not observe the Vigil.

    I'm also thankful that tomorrow's sermon is well in hand. If you look at the open document on my computer you could tell, I'm also working on Thursday and Easter Sunrise.

    coffee ... I need more coffee

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  9. Good morning all! Woke up way too early and tried to go back to sleep, but I guess it's time to abandon that effort.

    Sermon finished, so I am going to spend much of the day on my sorting-out-the-basement project. I haven't given my Easter sermon any thought at all, so maybe the physical sorting and clearing will be accompanied by lectionary meditation.

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  10. Hi, I'm up and feeling exhausted already. I have a meditation I wrote for Palm/Passion Sunday but that I may still tweak a little. It's pretty short still. we read a shorter version of the passion narrative, but I still find preaching on Passion Sunday challenging. I'm actually not preaching again until the vigil, but I have most of the planning responsibilities for vigil this year, and a little bit of filling in with that.

    Pat, there is no way that I could visit all of the Shut-ins before Easter. I applaud you.

    last week our church sanctuary's lighting panel went out, and so it's been a little challenging.

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  11. Good Morning!

    Welcome Muthah and thank for the sustaining prayers.

    Pat - be sure to take some time to rest and catch your breath - you have a full load, so it's wise that you intend to protect your day off!

    Pearl, blessings on your sleep, may it be peaceful, and on your day.

    God_Gurrl, It's really wise to learn to know their ways and appreciate what they have done, and then together forge a few tiny new traditions that can be built upon.


    Vicar - really, another Saturday of training. Goodness. At least your sermon is ready, yay for you.

    I have to offer a tiny reflection for the 8am service. The 10am service will be a passion play, which will cover both the Gospel reading and the homily. Maundy Thurs I have a lay preacher offering a reflection, Good Friday is a dramatic meditation I wrote in five parts, the Great Vigil is another lay preacher offering up St. Chrysostom's fabulous Easter homily, so I have a lot of work to do, but only my Easter sermon to write (and of course those Stations of the Cross which I cannot seem to get in a format I like, still playing with words and theology around this...yikes!

    I'll be around most of the day - I do have a rehearsal and work at the church for a few hours...But first, coffee!

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  12. Hi Robin, sorry about the restless early waking...I hope your energy is sustained!

    Hi Diane, welcome! The Great Vigil is a wonderful service to plan - yay for you!

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  13. Once more into the breech, dear friends. Once more!

    I still don't know what I'm doing tomorrow. This is my favorite Palm Sunday/ Passion Sunday sermon from my archives, from a couple of years back.

    The Party and the Passion

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  14. Good Morning Margaret, and yes, I concur with what Robin said above. I too left a church that had "all the answers" and only returned to church when I discovered one that provided room for doubt and questions and wrestling... And regardless what CC said, I suspect an older generation is looking for certainty, but the younger generation is looking for meaning...what does faith mean? Is what I hear them wrestling with and the old words and meanings of the tradition do not do it for them, these words need to be rearticulated in the context of community because they are finding meaning in community. At least that is what I am hearing..

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    1. Many of our younger people have wandered over to a nearby megachurch. I have wondered if it is because they like the music and all that goes with it or if the message draws them. As I have no real idea what that message is - rumors abound, of course - I cannot begin to answer my question!
      So back to the sermon.

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    2. I wonder if young people feel they have more of a voice in the megachurch. The music seems to invite them into the fold and the programs give them a reason to stay. Just guessing.

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    3. I just had a rather disheartening conversation with a friend of a friend. We drove past a church.

      F of F: "Oh, I went to a service there once. I knew couple of people there, and it was their first time too. Never went back, though. We were all just kind of...meh..."

      F: What are you looking for when you go to church?

      F of F: I have no idea.


      Sigh. The moral of that story is never have a bad day. Because someone who is looking for something might not find it if you do. Sigh.

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  15. palm sunday sermon is almost there... contrasting what it is to be a people of taking (ie., Pilate and his entourage) versus what it is to be a people who practice receiving and giving (uhm Jesus)... so we'll see if we get there.

    It's a 3/4 pot of coffee on... that'd be 8 cups. oy!

    then i'll be so wired, must walk dogs before the day gets too warm and my heart leaps out of my chest entirely.

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  16. This week the Head of Staff and I are preaching a dialogue sermon using the two-parades idea. He's representing people who appreciate the empire and I'm representing people who follow Jesus...ultimately, I convince him to come along and meet Jesus for himself. Because we're preaching together, the sermon is done! I can't remember the last time I had a pre-preaching Saturday without a sermon to write.
    Of course, I have a BOOK to write, so I'll still be writing away today. The chapter I'm working on right now is about finding the Holy in the Mundane--making everyday tasks into spiritual practices. Do you do that? How? You may find your way into the book!

    For those still on breakfast, I'm trying out a recipe I heard about from Diners Drive Ins and Dives--captain-crunch-coated-french-toast. oh yeah.

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    1. "finding the Holy in the Mundane"--Teri, thanks for the prompt. I'm preaching Easter Evening and am looking for a way out from the Emmaus Road story to Eastering emerging in our lives. Think you may have set me on a path. Thanks

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  17. Second Sunday here and diving into Holy Week. Fortunately, it's not terribly busy. Tomorrow's service has lots of music, poetry, and communion, so I need a brief homily. Good Friday is Tenebrae, and I'm just going to tweak the service a bit. Then Easter!

    Now, if only getting the house and office unpacked and settled were so easy!

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  18. A bit late getting started and been way too long since I was at this party! I've been writing/preaching, but just haven't made it here--I habit I want to get back into.
    We are "walking though" Holy Week in one day--begin with the palms, move to last supper narrative for Communion, then closing hymn ("Were You There?" minus the verse about resurrection), then the reading of the arrest, trial and crucifixion, ending with the curtain torn in two, and leaving in silence.
    I think the readings speak for themselves; my "sermon" will be more of a meditation on Holy Week and what it might mean to us. Rather than focus on the sufferings of Jesus as suffering, see them as contrast to what comes after--the resurrection. So many people suffer in so many ways, large and small--chronic illness, family problems, economic difficulties--I want to offer hope. Yes, this is a terrible and sad week, and I will not be minimising that, will be looking at that in detail--but it only takes meaning from the resurrection. It is important because it is NOT God's word to us, to the world. At least, that's where I think I'm heading.
    I have coffee and banana bread for those who need a pick-me-up...

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  19. Just to cap it all the electricity in the church has been off since yesterday morning. I have phoned faults countless times and they are very sympathetic but nothing happens. As it is now 5pm I'm not optimistic! I had to go to a neighbouring parish and get them to print our pew leaflet for us. Thank goodness I had it on my home computer.
    We have a brass band for the procession (which is apparently quite long!) but they will not stay on for the service (as most of their members are of different denominations and want to go to their own churches) so if, as seems likely, we have no electricity tomorrow we will have to be a capella.
    Give God thanks in all things! Can be an effort at times.

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  20. I am so glad I have decent sermons for Palm Sunday (Here) and Maundy Thursday to fiddle with and adapt. So my sermons are done - no sermon on Good Friday, just lots of scripture, bidding prayers, and the solemn reproaches.

    It's good because I am creating everything else from scratch - service outlines, readers theater readings, bulletins (no templates from previous years on file!) - everything. And I'm still working on getting the cleansing of the altar participants in line - and no, I don't care what the previous pastor did, this pastor is NOT cleansing the altar by herself! End of discussion.

    I'm tired and ready for Easter. I'd like to get my shut-ins visited next week, and I think I am in a position to get that done, but we'll have to see what the week brings.

    Now I have to hurry off to a council meeting.

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  21. oh! Pat -- I hear your pain!

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  22. Oops, just now reread my comment--meant to say "It is *not* God's last word to us..."

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  23. Praise God the electricity is back! These things come, I'm sure, to make us praise God even more when we are rescued!!

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  24. Hi everyone!

    I'm checking in late. Is there any of that Cap'n Crunch French Toast left? YUM!

    I went and got a mani-pedi, one of the world's best sermon procrastination activities ever!

    I am re-working a sermon from a few years ago. I find that "reworking" is not that much less time-intensive than "from scratch" is, but I needed a jump-start of sorts.

    Thinking about heating up some previously-frozen homemade soup on this cold and foggy day. What's your favorite?

    Thanks for hosting the party, Terri!

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  25. I am feeling much better about tomorrow, I did a dry run of the communion service with two of my deacons this morning while they prepared the table for tomorrow's service. Now I know where to stand, when to hand and when to bless.

    Just finished my manuscript of the passion of Jesus according to St. Mark which I will read dramatically as my sermon. Now what to tell the children??

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  26. Hello, lovely preachers and pals! We are using a set of dramatic monologues interspersed with a reading of the Mark Palm and Passion liturgies, so there is no sermon for me. But I had some thoughts that might be worth sharing, and posted them here: Stirred Up.

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  27. Praying for all RGBP, may the Holy Spirit surround you and your people, may hearts light up and lives be changed. Thank you all.

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  28. I don't know if there is a forum anywhere on this website for questions, but as this is about Easter can I put it here?
    For the Good Friday 3 hour service I am using the Passion according to Mark. (I'm reading the shorter version tomorrow.) I have divided it up into episodes and, on each one, give a short talk followed by an introduction to prayer, a time of silence and a closing prayer and hymn. I want to introduce the time of silence with a relevant chant/song. Do you have any suggestions about what I could use? I have some Taize, for instance, but am really stuck for a suggestion for the arrest (which is as far as I've gone -- I'll probably be stuck again later). Does anyone out there have any suggestions as to how I can go about this?

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    1. Pat, I would suggest you join our Facebook group (click here) and post the query there, too. I got some great help toward Maundy Thursday.

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  29. My short homily for this weekend is here. We have Acolyte Practice in about an hour, so I was rushing to get done before that. The church has a tradition of hosting an Art Show every Holy Week - the last two years have been interpretation of the Stations of the Cross, this year it is reflections on Holy Week. The reception is tonight. We get an amazing array of artwork from some inside of the community and others not connected in any way.
    Thank you to those who knew I was officiating my first funeral and offered prayers - it really means the world to me that you all are out there as a resource and as colleagues.

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    1. Wow - I love the idea of an art show that interpretes the Statoins of the Cross for Holy Week. Very Cool!

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  30. Thanks everyone for keeping the party going while I took care of the rehearsal and a few other "must-do's". Now I'm back for the day.

    I love the various array of services planned for Holy Week - each has their own character, each of you offer me an idea I hope I hold onto and try one day.

    I need to get cracking on the little homily for the 8am service. I'm thinking of using Peter Abelard's reflection where Abelard and Thibault find a rabbit caught in a trap and reflect on the rabbit's dying and Jesus' death. ...

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  31. Good afternoon preachers! I actually wrote my sermon yesterday because my younger daughter and her family are visiting. I've been reading Marcus Borg's "Last Week and it inspired me. I'm about to reread and edit while the grandbabies are napping, and I hope I still like it.

    And then I should think about the marathon that is to come... my seminarian is preaching on Maundy Thursday, but I need sermons for Good Friday, the Vigil, and Easter Sunday. I love Holy Week, but it exhausts me to think about it.

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    1. When I went to the Marcus Borg presentations a couple of weeks ago he primarily referred to Speaking Christian, but some of his talk came from "Last Week" - good stuff! I too hope you still like it.

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  32. I have a sermon! I used the beginning of an old sermon but then, when I added to it, it's 1986 words! I usually try to keep to 1300 words, but I'm not sure that's happening this time. I'm going to let it rest for awhile and then see what it feels like.

    The title: Chain of Fools. (Palm Sunday Mark and Psalms and added 1 Cor. 1:18-21)
    The idea: Only fools (did/will) follow a Savior like Jesus

    I wanted to get the April Fool's Day thing in there somewhere!

    Next project: I just realized that I don't know what happened to the last Netflix DVDs that should be here by now. Are they still at the P.O. box? In the car? Or . . . ?

    I'm making some iced green tea even though it's pretty cold outside. This native Texan just can't give up on the idea that Springtime is iced tea time no matter what the thermometer says. Plus, my fresh mint is growing like crazy!

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  33. Just popping in to say hi! I'm not preaching tomorrow thanks to a wonderful children and family director who wanted to organize something inter-generational the service and then our lovely Songbird who shared the perfect service to meet that need. So looking forward to worshiping, listening, and presiding at the table, but not necessarily preaching.

    I did put in practically a full day off work already today, though, since I had officer training in the morning and a sort of funeral in the afternoon. The service was for the mother of a church member who actually died last June. The service her father planned at his very fundamentalist church left her feeling uncomfortable and unsettled. Since all three was/are active members of our choir I offered her the opportunity to have a service of prayer and celebration with our church family at another time. Also her sons were the only grandchildren who could not come originally so they never got to be a part of a service at all. Well, a month later her husband killed himself so our plans never really happened. It finally worked out to do it today. It was nice to be with them.

    All that left me very thankful that my brain doesn't have to do any more work today, though.

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    1. yay for not having to teach and having all that creativity instead. But, wow, that memorial service - really a lot of emotion there. How wonderful that you and the family could celebrate this woman the way you did. I totally understand why your brain would be tired after that!

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    2. I'm glad it's going to work for you!

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  34. Ack! Blogger is acting up...every time I try to comment, if I scroll up to reread a comment, it won't let me write when I come back to the comment block. At first I thought it was the bluetooth key board for my iPad, but it is definietly blogger not liking something about my iPad.

    Anyway, is it time for a dinner break? Or something? Let me know!

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  35. I just had an Oh Oh moment. I forgot that I'm doing the worship service at the local nursing home tomorrow, that after spending all week getting volunteers to help me lead worship. Soooo...I've written up a quick order of service and took an old sermon and reduced by 3/4's to fit the context I am preaching in. Yikes!

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  36. Back from my very short council meeting - it's amazing how quick things go when there's only 3 of us! - and not one but 2 75-mile round trips into the florist to pick up the palms. Miscommunication all around - I thought they would be delivered, they thought I would pick up, I thought both congregations were on the same order and didn't discover different until I got back to the church and started dividing them up! So much for my relaxing afternoon. Even when I have my sermon done by Friday, it seems there's work left over to fill my Saturday. I guess work really does expand to exceed the time alloted for it!

    Dinner is soon - steak, roasted sweet potatoes and roasted califlower. Hope everyone is hungry - my husband is a really good cook!

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    1. Yum! dinner sounds fab. And, I feel your pain regarding that drive - I have lived places where I had to do that!

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  37. Good evening (EST)! My goodness, what full plates here at the party -- meaning task loads more than yummy treats! I'm coming to the party with only Palm Sunday's sermon in front of me: my church's Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services are liturgy and music only, and I've invited the seminarian intern to preach for Easter.

    But, lest I relax, Palm Sunday has me stumped! The service is full -- first Sunday of the month Communion, and retelling the palm parade in a Godly Play story style -- so I'm striving for 1 or 2 pages only as a sermon/meditation. Leaning toward writing poetically. Aiming to observe Palm Sunday overall as the "most human" church holiday -- it contains our hopes of finally having someone fix things for us, our disappointments that maybe this "fix" (Jesus) doesn't look exactly as we expect, our thrill for fame, our avoidance of hard truths, etc. In a page. Poetically.

    Blessings, all, for a deep well of energy & inspiration!

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    1. Hey Rachel! Welcome. I hope your inspiration strikes and you hit the right poetic note for what you seek!

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  38. So here is the little reflection I am offering at the 8am service, a reading from Peter Abelard

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  39. So I haven't managed to finish a chapter yet, but I did manage to make a delicious vegetarian shepherd's pie. Well, I don't actually know if it's very like the real thing, but it definitely has garlic mashed potatoes on top, so it can't be wrong. It's very good and there's enough for, oh, all 300 bloggers in our ring. LOL.

    I still need about 2,000 words about finding the holy in the mundane--so if you have tips, tricks, thoughts, or ideas about making everyday tasks into spiritual practices, I'm all ears. eyes. whatever. :-) Bonus: Holy Week is a perfect time to practice!!

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    1. Yum! Shepherd's pie. I think veggies topped with garlic mashed potatoes sounds like a fabulous Shepherd's pie!

      I'll think some on finding the holy in the mundane. Have you read Kathleen Norris' "The Quotidian Mysteries"...she talks about finding the holy while hanging laundry. I've always loved that idea, of finding God revealed in the ordinary stuff of every day.

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    2. ooh, no! Thanks! You also just reminded me of one of my favorite Carrie Newcomer songs--I even used it in a sermon on Mary and Martha recently, which means I should probably go re-read that sermon and see if I can use part of it as well as a line or two from the song.

      The Shepherd's Pie has lentils, veggies, and plenty of potatoes. :-) I wish I'd had more mushrooms...next time! (one of the hazards of just glancing at recipes and then making stuff up...)

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    3. Norris' "book" is a tiny thing, from some presentation she gave, but good stuff.

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    4. Not sure if it is helpful, but the line about making everyday tasks into spiritual practices brought to mind a recent conversation with my spiritual director. The insight was that feeling renewed and refreshed is not the same as encountering God. This came out of a conversation that has continued over a period of several months about how to make time in my life for meaningful spiritual practices.

      Her (my director's) observation was that the sorts of spiritual practices that have sustained (introverted) me in the past - things like journaling, and silence, and meditation - combine renewal and refreshment with encountering God. However, when life (for me, with infants/toddlers at home & a full-time job out of the home) does not allow such practices very often or very consistently - it doesn't mean we cease to encounter or walk with God. It may mean we aren't as rested, refreshed, renewed as we wish we were. And at one point in my life, the two - refreshment and experiencing God's presence - came about through a common set of practices. The fact that those practices are difficult right now may mean that I am more tired, more worn thin, than I would like to be for awhile. But it doesn't necessarily mean that I can't encounter God in just as real, just as meaningful, just as transformational ways - even if the "new" ways don't feel as nourishing/renewing to me.

      It was a helpful distinction to me because I think I have felt my faith was lagging as badly as my eyelids were drooping in the midst of the daily demands of life during this particular season. Its helpful to separate the two - yes, I'm tired. No, I'm not as energized or refreshed as I would like to be. And yes, I can still walk with God faithfully in the midst of the exhaustion!

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    5. anonymous - what a gift your spiritual director gave you to help you have this perspective. I remember having small children and being worn thin. I love the reminder to see God as God appears even in our fatigue.

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  40. Hi everyone, Quiet party today - I guess there's not much preaching going on. I AM preaching, but probably not from a manuscript, since I don't have a word written.

    Glad to read all your comments and hearing what everyone is up to today. We had a work day at church - mopped the chancel and wiped down the pews, and then exercised, so I'm feeling tired.

    In fact, my knees hurt, which is all I can think about, and pretty much all I want to talk about. But I'm thinking "my knees hurt" isn't gonna make much of a sermon, so I'm going to work now, ok?

    Anyone got a favorite story about someone doing something that seemed foolish, but actually was helpful/wise/important?

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  41. Hey Juniper, welcome! Sorry your knees hurt. I hope someone has a story for you...but I suspect the quiteness of the party has a little bit to do with some college basketball...

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  42. So I was thinking short for my homily tomorrow, but it ended up being regular length and I'm not inclined to cut it...we'll see how that goes.

    Last week I talked about Trayvon Martin in my sermon--the case wasn't my main focus but it inspired what I preached on (hating the parts of life in this world that allow/foster hate, violence, fear of those who aren't 'like us'). Afterwards there were a few muttered comments not to me but to each other that I had been "too political." This week I'm talking about Jesus' entry into Jerusalem as a planned demonstration ala Marcus Borg and about how Jesus was political and Christians were called to be political, not in the partisan sense but in the sense of caring about and engaging the 'domination system.' I may be adding fat to the fire, and while that is not my intent this seems to be a topic we need to engage. We'll see how it goes.

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    1. Many blessings - this sounds like a tough one, but good for you for getting what's muttered behind backs out in the open!

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  43. RevDrMom - sounds like you are speaking words that need to be heard even though the mutter against them. I will hold you in prayer, but I trust the Spirit has your back!

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  44. I may not be preaching tomorrow, but there are many details to be confirmed and coached when I get there, so I am heading to bed, praying that all will unfold smoothly.
    Blessings to those still preparing; may there be rest ahead!

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  45. Peace to each of you RevGals as we enter Holy Week. I find much strength from this online fellowship.

    As with Rachel, we have a full service with first of the month communion, children's choir, etc...so my sermon is more of a meditation...preaching about our fickleness/faithfulness. Martin Bell has a great short story from his book "The Way of the Wolf" called the "Rag Tag Army" about our fickleness.

    I am a bit weary already with a funeral/graveside on Thursday, a funeral/graveside on Friday and a wedding today.

    It will be a full but good week. My children are on Spring Break, so I am a little sad not to be able to spend more time with them. I don't like it when Spring Break and Holy Week collide.

    Blessings to each of you.

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  46. Peace to each of you RevGals as we enter Holy Week. I find much strength from this online fellowship.

    As with Rachel, we have a full service with first of the month communion, children's choir, etc...so my sermon is more of a meditation...preaching about our fickleness/faithfulness. Martin Bell has a great short story from his book "The Way of the Wolf" called the "Rag Tag Army" about our fickleness.

    I am a bit weary already with a funeral/graveside on Thursday, a funeral/graveside on Friday and a wedding today.

    It will be a full but good week. My children are on Spring Break, so I am a little sad not to be able to spend more time with them. I don't like it when Spring Break and Holy Week collide.

    Blessings to each of you.

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  47. Welcome, RevKel. It is a bit rugged to manage Holy Week and Spring Break!

    and for all the rest - I am heading to bed. Keep the party going! And sorry for any interruptions that may have happened when blogger and my iPad collided...

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  48. ooh, RevKel, excellent book suggestion. I don't have a supply job tomorrow; I've been working on next week's sermon and upcoming bulletins. I have "The Way of the Wolf," but haven't looked at it in a long time. Thanks for the reminder.

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  49. Hello everyone...I've been checking in periodically throughout the day, but just now remembered to comment. Today held a long meeting and then our last Messy Church (for now), but I've been reading and thinking for the last several hours. I'm scheduled for a very short meditation on the Philippians hymn and the children's sermon--but despite the flurry of thoughts, nothing on the page for either yet.

    I broke into the mint MnMs I was hoarding from Christmas. Glad to share!

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  50. Hey, anyone still up? And if so, did you know this?

    Just read that April Fools day began in France, after some stuff about a change to the calendar: "The butts of these pranks became known as a "poisson d'avril" or "April fish" because a young naive fish is easily caught. In addition, one common practice was to hook a paper fish on the back of someone as a joke."

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    1. Did NOT know that! Very interesting! I fear I am usually the April fish in any group. In fact I'm a little worried about what's going to happen tomorrow morning in the name of April Fool's. (But I kind of wish I had a jester hat or something for the children's sermon.)

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    2. Alison-in-FranceApril 2, 2012 at 6:49 AM

      I'm in France and spent most of yesterday having paper fish stuck on my back by the Sunday School kids. (I was leading worship, though not preaching, and had decided that if I did it with a fish on my back, that would be OK.) If it hadn't been Palm Sunday, I would probably have used a fish-theme for the service, but it all just got too complicated... Also I had a very full week, as did the preacher, so coordination time was minimal to say the least, which meant we decided we needed to keep it all simple.

      For another year, for April 1st, I think there must be scope to do something neat around the concept of the cross as "foolishness for the gentiles"

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  51. Just think, everyone...a year from now, Easter will be all done! It's March 31, 2013!

    Escapism? Maybe.

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  52. Good morning preachers and pals! I hope your day goes well! Blessings.

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  53. Well, after not much writing and much dozing, I woke up at 5ish and got this thing done. Whew.

    Blessings on all pondering, preaching, and proclamation this day.

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