June 16, 2013

Genesis 13:1-18 Psalm 133 1 Timothy 5:1-4 Mark 3:31-35 “A Blessing to Others” In Presbyterian and United and perhaps some other Churches as well, it is common to celebrate “Christian Family Sunday” on Mothers’ Day. This year, I thought we could do it on Fathers’ Day instead – equally appropriate, and the same day as our Family Worship service and church picnic. As I thought about “Christian Family Sunday” I started thinking about what makes a Christian family distinct from any other family. Is it just the fact that Christian families come to church on Sundays? Or is it religious activities that take place in the home? Reading bible stories, saying grace before dinner, or perhaps having a practice of bedtime prayers? Is it the determination of Christian families to care for one another and to forgive one another when we find ourselves in conflict and hurting each other? Don’t other families find ways to forgive and mend their relationships too? I came across a resource of “Christian Family Sunday” that encouraged looking at biblical families. Some of these families, like Ruth and Naomi for example, might give us some good examples of what it means to be faithful to one another as families, to sacrifice our own needs for the sake of the most vulnerable, and to stick together through challenges. Other biblical families, of course, might give us some good examples of how NOT to deal with our families. Jacob’s constant trickery and lies for example, don’t make … Read more »

July 10, 2016

Listen to this Sermon Genesis 13:1-12 Romans 12:9-21 Philippians 4:4-9 “The Fruit of the Spirit is PEACE” This week in St. Catharines Ontario, over 400 young Presbyterians gathered to learn, play, and worship together at the Canada Youth 2016 conference. Meanwhile in Baghdad, about 300 people were killed when a large car bomb exploded in a busy market. In the U.S., two black men were shot and killed by police for no good reason, and five police officers were killed and others injured by snipers in retaliation. In Bangladesh there was yet another terrorist attack, with people throwing homemade bombs at police who were standing guard outside a prayer service marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. And when I looked online at a listing of violent incidents and attacks this month alone, it went on and on and on. You might assume that the Presbyterian youth would go on with their program, likely unaware or at least unaffected by such terrible incidents so far away. But in fact, part of the CY program included learning about and responding to the world refugee crisis – the crisis caused by unrelenting violence against civilian communities and families. And when they gathered for worship, they prayed sincerely and intensely for peace in the world. The CY Choir, made up of young singers from across the country, sang the old gospel song, turned civil rights anthem, turned hymn of faith and hope once again. They sang “We shall overcome” as … Read more »