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April 5, 2020 – Palm Sunday Click Here to watch Video Rev. Todd Weir Matthew 21:1-17 I love a good parade – always have. As a child my mother loaded me in a red wagon and took me to the humongous parades at Iowa State University. Students put all their Springtime yearnings and creativity into the floats. It was Spring 1968, and I remember marching bands and one group of hippies, all wearing overalls and playing “This Land is Your Land” by blowing on Coke bottles. The PRIDE March in Northampton is my favorite parade, with its rainbow of joy, and celebration that love is love. Parades celebrate who we are. They can also be a protest against what is unjust, and a hope for a better future. It is heart-breaking when it rains on our parade, or worse, [...]
Click here to watch video Rev. Todd Weir Ezekiel 37:1-14 March 29, 2020 Can you still remember what you gave up for Lent? We have given up a lot in the past few weeks – handshakes, warm embraces, shopping, haircuts and a cup of coffee with a friend. Worse, things have been taken away from us – Sunday gatherings, security, health, 3 million jobs. In the midst of adapting and worrying and flattening the curve, I have forgotten what I pledged to do for Lent. Yet I feel like I am living Lent more deeply, facing the vulnerability and uncertainty of our human condition. Lent feels unavoidable. A pastor on a Facebook forum raised the issue if Easter could be moved back a few weeks till we gather again. I’m sympathetic. Virtual Easter will be weird. But something [...]
Click here to watch the video! Rev. Sarah Buteux March 22, 2020 Lent 4, Year A Psalm 23 John 9:1-7 “Christ is present to us, insofar as we are present to each other.” -Herbert McCabe “Rabbi,” asked the disciples, “who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” It may have been Andrew or Philip who asked. John just says it was “the disciples.” But I bet it was Nathaniel. “Can anything good come out of Nazareth,” Nathaniel. Yeah. He always struck me as a bit judgy. “Who sinned” asked Nathaniel, “…that this man was born blind? “Who sinned,” and caused this ostensibly bad thing to happen? I don’t know if it’s a good question, but it’s certainly an understandable one. Because if we could just figure out whose fault it is when bad things happen, we [...]
Rev. Todd Weir Exodus 17:1-7 March 15, 2019 I was taken aback when I walked into the conference room at my first church. The faded institutional yellow paint was peeling. A beat up wooden table was surrounded by metal folding chairs. A decades old stretcher in the corner on battered wooden poles, and the army green canvas was brittle and frayed. At a council meeting I asked why the stretcher was there. “Oh, that is an important church artifact. During the flu epidemic of 1918, the church chapel was used as a hospital. We have kept this stretcher ever since to remember.” That’s great. But why is it behind the door? If it is important, why not mount it on the wall of the chapel and put up a plaque to remember?” This suggestion was met with awkward [...]
by Rev. Sarah Buteux March 8, 2020, Lent 2, Year A, Genesis 12:1-9 John 3:1-6 “The difficult is what takes a little time. The impossible is what takes a little longer.” – Fridtjof Nansen I voted this past week and I wore a little sticker to prove it. Did you all vote if you were able? Good. Like many of you, I thought long and hard over these last few months about who I would vote for when the primary finally rolled around. And like everyone else in America, I wrestled with the question of electability vs. each candidate’s ability to do the job and do it well. And until this past weekend, I still wasn’t entirely sure who I was going to vote for. But then Tuesday came [...]
Rev. Sarah Buteux Epiphany 7, Year A Matthew 5:21-48 To view sermon click here O.K. time for a little spiritual inventory. In your program this morning you will find one of those little tests like the ones you find in magazines or on buzz feed to help you determine whether or not you’re a good manager, or friend, or kisser. Only I based this one on Matthew 5, to help you determine whether or not you’re a good Christian. You all know how these things work. So let’s run down the list and see how we do. Circle 1. if you think the statement is true all of the time, 2. most of the time, 3. some of the time, and 4. if it’s not true at all. 1 always 2 most of the time 3 some of the time [...]
Rev. Sarah Buteux February 3, 2020 Epiphany 6, Year A Deut. 30:15-20 Mat. 5:1-12 I think I can honestly say that there was a point in my life when I had parenting all figured out. I really understood the importance of discipline and consistency, obedience and tough love. I shook my head at all the other parents out there who would count to three, not get their way, and then count to three all over again. I chuckled at the bribes and shuddered at some of the threats I overheard at the grocery store, in the parking lot, on the playground. And I’d think to myself: come on people, it’s not that complicated. Seriously, it’s all about follow through. If you say you’re going to take the toy away when you get to three, then just take the [...]
What Are You Looking For? John 1:29-42 January 19, 2019 What are you looking for? This is one of the best questions ever. It is also hard to answer. At a job interview you may be asked,” What are you looking for in a new job?” Don’t say more money. That will kill your interview. You have to say, “I’m looking for a chance to use my skills to make a difference in a great organization.” If you are single and you go to Match.com, you are asked what you are looking for in a romantic partner. I’m so glad I don’t have to figure out an answer. You can’t just say you want to meet someone who is attractive, kind and fun. You have come up with stuff like, “I like pina coladas, getting caught in the [...]