Take Virgin Mary Off The Pedestal

There is nothing worse than being put up on a pedestal. And there has perhaps been no one whose usefulness to humanity has been more misused than the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Our Lord.

When we hear this Gospel of St. Luke passage read (1:26-38) on the Fourth Sunday of Advent, the strains of countless […]

Winter Pounces

Advent is perfectly placed in the liturgical and meteorological calendar. It provides a natural faith lesson. Jesus says, “Stay awake! Be ready!”

This was a winter arrival to test readiness. The sheep were grazing on lush grass right up to December 3. Then winter pounced like a deep darkness burglar on December 4. The weatherman predicted […]

The Animals Teach Us Advent Expectation

‘Tis the season for expectation. Pregnant waiting. Yearning flavored with confidence. Confidence born of experience.

Advent has always been a favorite time for me. Of course, as a child, it all led up to that moment when we drove home from Christmas Eve pageant, past the colored lights on the homes and along the runways of […]

Advent People during Anxious Times

I returned to the congregation I served as pastor for a dozen years and was refreshed by the community of Christ and a service of Lessons and Carols for Advent.

 

I was thirsty for Advent. I don’t buy into the paranoia pitched by Fox News about a so-called “war on Christmas,” but I do lament a […]

Joseph's Fear and Ours

The following is a sermon I prepared for Advent 4–December 22 at First Lutheran Church in Lee, Illinois. Icy roads caused the cancellation of the service, so, I offer this sermon for the members of Lee and for anyone interested. I pray it adds to Christmastide reflections.

 

If an angel of the Lord appears before you […]

Advent to Ecstasy

 

Some people have a hard time with Advent. They see it as a giant wet blanket on the “holiday season,” much like, some folk think certain strands of Christianity itself cast a wet blanket on the enjoyment of life.

In my experience the act of repentance that is called for in the Advent season is a […]