August 2, 2009

Sermon by the Rev. Amanda Currie 2 Samuel 11:26 – 12:13a Psalm 51:1-12 Ephesians 4:1-16 John 6:24-35 Back in February, I helped to lead an ecumenical retreat for women in ministry here in Saskatoon. The Eucharistic theme of our time together was taken from Henri Nouwen’s book, “Life of the Beloved”. We explored how our lives (as women in ministry) are taken, blessed, broken, and shared for the life of the world, as we participate in Christ’s own ministry today. As part of our time together, we decided that it would be both fun and meaningful to make bread. I had never made bread except using a bread machine, but some of the other women were at least occasional bread bakers, so we gave it a try. We gathered in groups of 6 or 7 around tables in the dining room at Queen’s House, and took turns adding ingredients, mixing, kneading, sharing stories, and laughing a lot. And much to my surprise, our bread turned out both beautiful and delicious. We ate it together the next morning during our closing worship. It was an ecumenical “holy meal” with plenty of bread and wine to share as we celebrated our brief time together and began to think about returning to our particular ministries. And I have not stopped making bread since. The grocery store still has my business, but I’m usually buying flour, yeast, and milk, and rarely any pre-made bread. There’s something about the smell of the yeast, the feel … Read more »

August 9, 2009

Sermon by the Rev. Amanda Currie Ephesians 4:25 — 5:2 John 6:35, 41-51 The day of a baptism is a wonderful day to reflect on and to celebrate the church — the family of God — the Body of Christ that we all belong to together. Today we are welcoming a new member of our big family. Grace Anne is joined to Christ and to all of us (to our congregation here at St. Andrew’s, and to the whole Christian church throughout the world). I would love to be able to simply celebrate that… to say “Welcome Grace Anne, to this big, happy, healthy, wholesome family of God!” and let that be all that I say. But like most families, our Christian family is not always a happy place. Our family is prone to dysfunction. We often do recognize that we all belong to the same family, but we don’t always get along, or talk to each other, or act like we belong together. We’ve had lots of disagreements in our Christian family over the years, and lots of our members are still feeling angry or hurt or disappointed. Some have moved out. Others have given up on trying to get along, and mostly stay in their own little corners of the family home. When Doug and Vickie brought Grace Anne home from the hospital a few months ago, their new house in Biggar wasn’t quite ready to move into yet. And the Christian family home that she officially joins … Read more »

August 23, 2016

Ephesians 6:10-20 John 6:56-69 “A Spiritual Battle?” The other day I was reading a reflection about our recent national church meeting, the General Assembly, and the writer mentioned that there were a couple of women praying throughout the meeting for the deliberations. Normally, I would have been happy and grateful to know that we were being held up in prayer as we met and made important decisions for the denomination. But the author referred to these praying women as “prayer warriors.” Maybe you have heard that term, or even used it yourself, but it made me a little bit uncomfortable. Given the context of the discussion of some difficult and controversial subjects, I wondered who these women were “warring” against with their prayers. Maybe against me, with my liberal views, or against the evil spiritual forces that were causing me to have such views! I was somewhat suspect of these “prayer warriors,” even though they were probably just praying for wisdom, and unity, and love in our deliberations. This Sunday’s text from Ephesians sets off some of the same feelings in me, because Paul seems to be inviting the Ephesians to get ready for a battle. As a person with more pacifist leanings, it doesn’t sit well when he starts talking about Christians putting on armour… a breastplate, and boots, a shield, a helmet, and even a sword. It reminds me of how uncomfortable I am singing hymns with militaristic language like, “Onward Christian soldiers… marching as to war…” But … Read more »