“Herod on Our Family Tree?” Matthew 2:1-23

In most churches, last Sunday was Epiphany Sunday.  Matthew 2:1-12, the story of the magi, is the Gospel reading in the Lectionary for that Sunday and is understood as Matthew’s version of the birth of Jesus. In our minds as well as in Christmas pageants and Living Creche productions, we… Continue reading

Luke 2:22 40 “The Sword of Discrimination”

I remember a professor in one of my psychology classes distributing baby and childhood photos of Adolph Hitler and Albert Schweitzer. The teacher asked whether we could see in the photos of Hitler anything sinister, cruel, paranoid, and psychotic. He then asked if we could see in the photos of… Continue reading

Isa. 35:1-10 “The Joyous Gift of Wonder”

Let us pray: Merciful God, during this holy season prepare us in heart and mind, in soul and strength to love you with all we have and all we are. Come close to us in this hour. Speak to our deepest needs. Nurture those seeds of promise and goodness you… Continue reading

The Story of “O Holy Night”

(“O Holy Night” is my favorite Christmas carol. Both the music and the words are incredibly moving. The background to this familiar Christmas song is intriguing. Most of the following story is based on research done by scholars interested in religious musicology. There may be some debate and questions regarding… Continue reading

Luke 1:26 38 “Those Blasted Angels”

What do you think of when you hear the word “angel”? Chubby babies with little, tiny wings? Effeminate men in bright robes washed in heavenly light with impressive wings? (Have you ever wondered how they sit or sleep at night?) Many of our images of angels come from European paintings,… Continue reading

Luke 1:26-38 “Giving Birth to God”

I’ll be honest. If I had been Mary, I would have run the other way. Mary should have known her Bible. Whenever an angel appears, look out! Things are going to change drastically. Take Abraham and Sarah. Sarah was past the age of bearing children. She had already gone through… Continue reading

Isaiah 11:1-9 “And a Little Child Shall Lead Them”

Have you ever been disappointed in a politician? Have you ever voted for a politician because you believed in what he or she promised or supposedly stood for, only to learn later that this politician was like all the rest? Well, in one sense we have only ourselves to blame…. Continue reading