Surely The Days Are Coming

Rev. Sarah Buteux                           November 28, 2021 Advent 1, Year C Jeremiah 33:14-16, Luke 21: 25-36 And so it begins - Advent - the first and strangest season in the church year. Or maybe I should say, and so it ends, given that Advent always begins with the “Day of the Lord” fast approaching.  Outside of these doors people are rushing; rushing because there are only 26 shopping days left between now and Christmas. But in here we’re not rushing. We are waiting; waiting for the birth of a savior that has already come and the return of a savior who is also, somehow, already here.  Out there they speak of want: What do you want for Christmas? But in here we sing of longing, our longing for [...]

By |2021-11-28T13:47:19-05:00November 28th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Jesus, the King of Subversion

To watch this morning's service, click here. The sermon begins around the 25 minute mark. I am including the words of welcome here as well because they set the tone for the whole service. Words of Welcome Friends good morning and welcome to First Churches. Today is the culmination of the liturgical year. Today we celebrate “Christ the King” Sunday.  It is also the Sunday before Thanksgiving and so the readings and the music and the sermon, all of which were completed before Friday afternoon, will reflect that.  But given the verdict of not guilty that was handed down on Friday in the Rittenhouse trial, I fully understand that praise and thanksgiving might not be the first thing on everyone’s lips.  I have no doubt that for many of us grief, outrage, and despair, are in the mix as well.  [...]

By |2021-11-22T09:57:24-05:00November 22nd, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

A Sure Foundation

Rev. Sarah Buteux November 14, 2021 Proper 28, Year B Mark 13:1-8 To watch this morning's service, click here. The sermon begins at the 22 minute mark.   You all know I’m a little type A.  Ok, you all know I’m a whole lot of type A, which means that I’m a planner. I like to take the long view, get all my ducks in a row, and make sure that everything is covered and done ahead of time so that if anything goes wrong - which it inevitably will - I will have the capacity to fix it.  Even my plan B’s have plan a) and b) subsections. Which, I admit, is a little over the top. But, on the whole, isn’t really a bad thing, because it typically means I’m someone you can count on to get the [...]

By |2021-11-15T10:42:13-05:00November 15th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Not Far from the Kingdom

Rev. Sarah Buteux Photo by Florian Marschoun October 31, 2021 Proper 26, Year B Mark 12:28-34 To watch this morning's service, click here After church this past Sunday, as I was saying my goodbyes to visitors and friends, a man came up the steps to speak with me. To protect his privacy, we’ll call him Stan.  I’ve seen Stan around the church here and there. He’s currently unhoused and has a bed at the Grove Street shelter, but he still comes down town to check on his friends, especially some of the more vulnerable people who are living on the streets. He’s a gentle soul with a loving spirit, and I’ve seen more than one weary person out front lean into him for a hug and a word of encouragement. Stan shared a little about some of the health struggles [...]

By |2021-11-01T12:27:49-04:00November 1st, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Can God Cure Ableism?

Rev. Sarah Buteux October 24, 2021 Proper 25, Year B Mark 10:46-52 To view this morning's service click here.I don’t need or want a show of hands this morning, but how many of you have ever used the word “blind,” to describe a date or pointed out the “blindspot” in a persons’ thinking? Have you ever lamented that your argument “fell on deaf ears,” or described something hopelessly uncool as “lame?” Who, here, has come home after a “crazy” day at the office or declared a situation to be “totally insane,” claimed that you were “paralyzed” with fear or “crippled” by anxiety? Or caught yourself saying something like, “let’s all walk over,” only to realize that at least one of you would be rolling. Or said, “Please rise,” knowing full well that there are people present who simply can’t? I [...]

By |2021-10-25T08:46:44-04:00October 24th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

A Ransom for Many

Rev. Sarah Buteux October 17, 2021 Mark 10:35-45 To view todays' service click here Has anyone here ever heard of beer and hymns…wait for it…as a thing you do together? Cause it’s a thing.  I doubt it’s been happening much lately thanks to Covid, but you’d be amazed how many different types of people will turn out to sing old hymns and drink fresh beer just for fun.  One YouTuber describes Beer and Hymns as “like a karaoke all-skate of songs that are nostalgic and meaningful, whether you love them because of their history or your present beliefs.”1 Back in the day when I used to go to progressive Christian conferences, there would almost always be a Beer and Hymns night where hordes of ex-evangelicals and mainliners would gather to sing all the hymns we don’t sing so much anymore [...]

By |2021-10-17T21:02:31-04:00October 17th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Put People First

Rev. Sarah Buteux Mark 10:2-16 Proper 22, Year B To view today's service click here. The sermon begins around the 9 minute mark. My favorite moment in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, by C. S. Lewis, is when Susan and Lucy ask Mr. and Mrs. Beaver to describe Aslan (Lewis's representation of Jesus). They ask if he is a man and Mr. Beaver replies. "Aslan a man? Certainly not. I tell you he is the King of the wood and the son of the great Emperor-beyond-the Sea. Don't you know who is the King of Beasts? Aslan is a lion-- the Lion, the great Lion." "Ooh!" said Susan. "I'd thought he was a man. Is he--quite safe? I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion." "That you will, dearie, and make no mistake," said Mrs. Beaver, "if there's anyone [...]

By |2021-10-03T19:59:19-04:00October 3rd, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Hellfire and Millstones: Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God

Rev. Sarah Buteux September 26, 2021 Proper year B Mark 9:39-50 May the words of my mouth and the meditations of our hearts be acceptable in your sight, our rock and our redeemer. Amen Roughly two hundred and eighty years ago, Jonathan Edwards preached not just his most famous sermon, but perhaps the most famous sermon ever heard on American soil. Which was? “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” Yes, and it’s striking that most of you know that.  I mean, can anyone recall the title of last week’s sermon? Or the sermon from two weeks ago? Or the title of any sermon you’ve heard here over the last 9 years? Me either. And I chose the title for a bunch of them. But we all know about that sermon, whether we’ve read it or not, [...]

By |2021-09-26T14:22:08-04:00September 26th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Game Changer

Rev. Sarah Buteux September 12, 2021 Mark 8:27-38 Proper 19, Year B To watch today's service, click here. (the sermon begins at the 12 minute mark) Would you hire Jesus to pastor our church?  Take a moment and think about it. Like, really think about it. Would you hire Jesus to pastor our church? I know how much you all love this church. I know a little less about how much you all love Jesus, because that’s personal, and I’m not about to get up in anybody’s business. But given the fact that you’re here I’m assuming you love Jesus on some level. Right? Right? Let me see those jazz hands.Yeah. We love our church and we love Jesus.  But after what you just heard, do you love him so much that you’d put him in charge around here?  With [...]

By |2021-09-12T19:54:56-04:00September 12th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments

Wash Your Hands. Protect Your Heart.

By Rev. Sarah Buteux                                                   August 29, 2021 Mark 7:1-23 Proper 17, Year B Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile,  since it enters, not the heart but the stomach - Mark 7:18 To watch today's service click here.   Last week on Substack, Nadia Bolz-Weber came out with an essay on circuit breakers that really spoke to me, (which is saying something since I barely understand what a circuit breaker is or does or whatever). But listen in, because I think this will really speak to you too: I used to live, (she writes,) in a very old apartment building with super sketchy electrical wiring. Were I to audaciously [...]

By |2021-08-29T13:31:52-04:00August 29th, 2021|Sermons, Worship|0 Comments
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