IMG_0447This has been a quiet week in the manse; no meetings, no real deadlines… just my July task of filing, clearing, tidying and generally doing all the things that do not get done through the year (like sorting through my craft cupboard!). It is pretty quiet at church too – many families away visiting, and travelling, so no children until mid-August when school starts up again. The congregation is small, but committed, and over coffee time after worship there is still plenty of chatter!

Throughout July and August I usually only preach twice – maybe three times, and all through these months we are also off lectionary; this year having decided to look at lesser known bible passages, books or characters.  We have a talented team who share in worship all through the year, and over these two months they also share in the preaching – and we have had some really interesting and thought provoking messages already. Last week was my turn and the character I chose, Rachel, mother of Joseph and Benjamin, is introduced in this week’s RCL Old Testament reading – there’s a great starter discussion here, from Rachel Keefe as she shared in the RCL lectionary reflections on Tuesday.

Depending where you live – north or south; east or west you will be deep in the holiday season, or deep in midwinter. What are you thinking about this weekend?

Lectionary, summer series, following some other scheme? Let us know, share your highs and lows, ask questions, seek inspiration – that’s what our preacher party is all about!

I have a kitchen full of goodies as I prepare for our Summer Horticulture Show – jams, pickles and shortbread all being tested out before the big day – any requests?

 


Julie Rennick is a Church of Scotland minister, serving a rural community in the village of Earlston in the Scottish Borders. She blogs at A Country Girl, writes for Spill the Beans and contributed to the RevGals book, There’s a Woman in the Pulpit


RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

38 thoughts on “11th Hour Preacher Party

  1. We’re doing a pulpit swap with a sister congregation in a neighboring town. They are primarily Hispanic, and we are primarily Anglo–though not exclusively in either case. I’m pretty excited about it, as the other pastor and I hope we might foster some collaboration between the two congregations.

    I’m preaching the Matthew passage, with the different parables about the Kingdom of Heaven. The other pastor is preaching the same passage at my place.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love that pulpit swap around – I’ve never tried it myself – look forward to hearing how it goes.
      And parables about the kingdom give a rich source for encouragement!

      Like

  2. first week back from annual leave and thinking about the parables in Matthew. This afternoon the church hosted a fundraiser for the local community organisation which operates 10 accommodation programs, plus other support services. Great afternoon, but i am now very tired, but it is Saturday evening and a sermon needs to appear for tomorrow morning. Monday i head of on retreat with other UCA Ministers from the region, though looks like i will be back for an hour Wednesday afternoon to lead our mid week communion service. good thing the retreat is only 15 minutes away.
    on with the gospel

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow Pearl!! That’s a busy day – I hope you got enough together to allow you to bed at a decent time!
      Sleep well, and blessings for the morning

      Like

  3. After four weeks away from lectionary (I preached a series on Ruth), I’m back to Matthew and will do the Kingdom of Heaven texts. Our kids are in worship during the summer because they do not have Sunday school (which usually meets during worship 3 out of 4 Sundays). I’m trying to figure out how to include them in the sermon tomorrow. It’s a fun text so hopefully it will be a joyful time of worship. Right now its morning and I’m on my second cup of coffee. I have to multi-task three things that must be done today-newsletter, final VBS chores (it starts Monday), and sermon…hoping to grab a snack or two in between the challenges back and forth. Blessings to all across the waters and time zones.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Blessings on your day – here in Scotland it is now early afternoon; we do not have any sort of VBS here – not enough helpers for a full week, nor enough kids, but will be doing a Messy Church tent at our community day just as school goes back – so thanks for the reminder I need to meet with the leaders before I take my vacation!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m dreaming of the day I can make my pilgrimage to Scotland! A Messy Church tent at community day sounds fantastic! I love the idea of getting out into the community. I’ll have to hang on to what you’re doing as an idea to include in our outreach. So cool!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I had a bit of a power outage fridge-saster when I was out of town last weekend, so I’m out of jam at the moment….feel free to drop some off, I’m happy to quality control. 😉

    We are in the midst of a summer series on intergenerational relationships in scripture, so this week I have Moses and his father in law Jethro. It’s a text that never comes up in a lectionary (either RCL or NL) as far as I can tell, but I have some friends who’ve helped with some of the background work (thanks to my rabbi friend and to Wil G, especially!), so I’m sitting down to write now, hoping that will allow me to go visit Nikki for dinner, as she’s up on holiday at the moment! 🙂

    The kids are in worship for the summer here as well, which means that for the children’s time we are setting the scene for the main reading, then giving them some things to listen for, then reading it while they are there in front, then talking about what they heard after…that gives me a bit of sermon flexibility because it means I can put some things in the children’s talk and so don’t need them to fit into the sermon. Very handy for when I have too many ideas. LOL!

    I have all the makings of root beer floats (including A&W root beer, imported from the US), so if you need an afternoon pick-me-up…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have lots of raspberry jam – I could come up to the seaside next week to bring you some!
      Enjoy Moses and Jethro – I love their interactions – I think we all need a Jethro in our lives to call us to account in a caring way

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, we do all need a Jethro….and also the openness and humility to hear and try out their advice without all the defensiveness that is most of our usual response to “let me give you some advice”… LOL.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. My Baptist colleague led a devotional on Moses and Jethro at our ministerial alliance meeting last month. I was intrigued enough to go back and read the passages myself. Filing this series idea away for the future…

      Like

      1. It’s been really fun and interesting so far. We’ve had the feeding of the 5000 in John, where a boy shares his lunch; Samuel and Eli; “who is my family?”; Ruth and Naomi; Simeon, Anna, Mary, Jesus; Moses & Jethro; Timothy & his mother/grandmother; “let the little children come”…we’ll close with an all-age service using “your young shall see visions and your old shall dream dreams.”

        Liked by 2 people

  5. God bless you all! I pray for my sisters around the world, as well as for those here in the US, since for the moment, I preach only two Sundays a month at the home, and even then, I don’t need to write a long sermon for my residents! Maybe I will show up in Scotland and/or Australia, some day!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Lee – any time!
      There’s a good group of Revgals here, and we are always happy to have a reason for getting together

      Like

  6. I have just over half a sermon written, but suddenly everything else is on the planet–by which I really mean on the internet–is WAY more interesting. I need the sermon fairy back!
    Or maybe I need a snack….

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Well friends, it is now 5.30 here in Scotland. Because I am not preaching tomorrow I have had a very quiet day – cleaned out a cupboard (made more mess!) made six pounds of Apple, Raspberry and Strawberry Jam (the show requires a three fruit jam…) and sorted some yarns for my loom.
    Praying that as I go into evening, and Pearl and others down under sleep soundly, you all in those other time zones find the inspiration you are looking for.
    I’ll look back in again after I cook dinner…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s now 6.10 pm here in Scotland. I went to our open morning at church and an old friend called in. We’ve had an afternoon chatting- none of which has got my sermon out of my head and onto paper. First Sunday back after the holidays. Have been living with the Matthew parables in my head all week. Can’t decide what to do with any children who may come along.
    So, time for chicken, potatoes and caulifower/cheese. All welcome.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hooray, I have nearly 1200 words, and that is enough for a sermon. Whether they actually make a coherent sermon is anybody’s guess, but I’m hoping for the best…mainly because now it’s Saturday night and that means takeaway for dinner! Yay! Falafel wrap and chips are calling my name….
    I may be back later tonight to ponder the prayers and such, or to edit the sermon if it turns out not to be interesting, but in the meantime….I’ll probably grab some jalapeño poppers too, and there’s always enough to share!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Preaching about the parable of the leaven and how the kingdom is surprising and unpredictable. The vast quantities used by the woman remind me of Disney’s Sorcerer’s Apprentice which makes me smile. My kitchen is much quieter than hers or Mickey’s, but there’s fresh fruit from the farmer’s market and with my sermon written, time for coffee and a chocolate chip cookie.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi all! I have written out my entire sermon, because I have had 3 funerals in the past week and my brain is fried. Zipping through all the kingdom of heaven is likes. My favorite is the kingdom of heaven is like women in Haiti training to be midwives, from a photo article in the Washington Post sometime this past week.

    Then after church I am off to Chicago with several other Presbyterians for 3 days of training at the Center for Parish Development. Tonight for my birthday is a family picnic at our local outdoor ampitheatre to hear a baroque orchestra play Vivaldi — and the weather is perfect!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Sunday morning, last night i was worried the sermon was all over the place, and it is. no time or energy to do much with it. most people will be in a good mood form yesterdays fundraiser.

    Like

    1. Those are the moments when I pray for the Spirit to be more active in the hearing than the preaching. 😉 I’m sure it was excellent!

      As we used to say around here: remember, if you’ve got a dog, walk it proud–the Holy Spirit has your back!

      Like

  13. Here in the USA it is truly the 11th hour. I’m supplying at a parish, because I don’t have a congregation per se. I am a hospice chaplain. And sermons are not a normal part of our spiritual care. Nevertheless, I am intrigued by the mustard seed analogy for the kingdom of God. I’m thinking we are the mustard seed and God is the Gardener. The contemporary story that has been coming to mind today is the one about the little girl named Malala – the little girl “who stood up for education and was shot by the Taliban”.
    I think our lives no matter how small or insignificant can have a profound effect on the world. Her has just because she wanted an education. I think the kingdom of God is represented in her story and countless others. We each matter and each of us can and do make a difference, just by our life here on this earth.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. We are finishing up a Super Hero series with WONDER WOMAN!!! I am excited to preach this and am using themes from Esther, Deborah and the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4). And I am having a great time organizing my desk, looking for my favorite pen, writing a to-do list for a big event coming up this week, starting a load of laundry… Uh. Huh. Not writing the sermon. Now it’s almost 9 pm on Saturday night and it’s time to strap in and DO IT.

    Oy. Vey. Why do I do this?

    In any case, I’m trying to bring a series to a close AND lift of the unique ways that women in particular are part of the Church’s narrative. Can we speak Truth to power? Can we lead the reluctant? Can we be so transformed by Christ’s story to us that we are empowered to go tell everyone what we have seen and heard?

    Holy Spirit download and off we go! My daughter has rescued me from procrastinating further and is baking Wonder Woman cookies (pre-fab from the grocery) for coffee hour afterwards. 🙂

    Like

  15. Leading worship for the second of three weeks in a row, all different congregations and Presbyteries. Romans 8 RCL paired with Psalm 139. Sharing assurances in the midst of ongoing chaos and disruptions.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’m preaching on Solomon and the idea that God’s wisdom is available to us as well. I’m going to tie it back to the Romans text (nothing can separate us from the love of God) with the idea that that is the wisdom of God.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Good morning one and all!
    It is 8 .00 here, its a calm still morning after the wild weather we had yesterday

    Praying that the Spirit will be with you all, and work her beauty and inspiration into you as you wake, tweak and go to worship
    blessings to you all

    Like

We hope you'll join the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s