Welcome to the party. I’ve been out of town this week (and most of the last 3), so I’m writing my sermon at the Denver Airport today. I’m frustrated by snarled travel plans, but glad I’m getting home, more or less on time.

The RCL post from earlier in the week is here. Are you preaching about the death of Saul? “How the mighty have fallen, and the weapons of war perished!” Can we read that phrase sincerely, as David seems to, in a world where snark and snide remarks rule? Here’s a sermon I preached on that text a while back. How can we move closer to each other, sincerely, when the world tries to lead us away from each other?

This week’s psalm, (130), may be a comforting word in a hurting world. “Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD.”

The gospel lesson from Mark 5 is one of my favorites. Today I would be satisfied if I could touch the hem of Jesus’ garment–anything to get me anywhere near him. Three years ago, when I preached that text, we were mourning the shooting at Mother Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston. We have new gun deaths in the US to mourn this week. We all need to move closer to each other for Jesus’ healing touch.

Our Narrative feature is taking a summer vacation, but if you’re preaching the Narrative, as I am, we’re in 1 John. Resources at Working Preacher are here.  

I hope you aren’t all sitting in airports, working on your sermons. (And I hope to be home before this post gets too many comments!) I have overpriced airport food to share, and an outlet to charge my phone.

Where is your sermon muse taking you this week? Ideas for children sermons you want to share? Last minute liturgies to add?

In the US, we are approaching our July 4 holiday. I won’t be mentioning it in worship, but if you have ways you like to include patriotic things that you want to share, feel free.

A friend took this picture outside an art museum in Alabama. Good advice for us all. (Edited to add: this is apparently a Brene Brown quote). 



Marci Auld Glass is the pastor of Southminster Presbyterian Church and lives with her husband and sons in Boise, Idaho. She is a graduate of Trinity University and Columbia Theological Seminary. She serves on the Clergy Advocacy Board of Planned Parenthood and the Mission Agency Board of the Presbyterian Church USA. Marci blogs at Glass Overflowing and is among the contributors to the RevGals book,There’s a Woman in the Pulpit (SkyLight Paths).

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.





27 thoughts on “11th Hour Preacher Party: Move Closer

  1. I don’t know yet if I’ll be putting this in Sunday’s sermon, but I was struck by Dr. Wil Gafney’s tweet earlier this week that one aspect of privilege is not knowing what the desperation of those trying to cross the US southern border is like– many of my congregation have never felt that desperate, and I haven’t, either. I see the same desperation in the unnamed woman in the crowd, willing to cross all sorts of boundaries/rules in order to reach Jesus. If I imagine myself in the crowd, am I appalled that she’d put us all at risk of being unclean? Am I annoyed that she’d interrupt Jesus when an important man needs Jesus’s attention for his dying daughter?

    I am holding off on writing the sermon until tomorrow after I participate in a “Families Belong Together” rally. But these are my thoughts this evening.


    1. Yes. Dr. Gafney’s point is well taken. (And it may or may not be well received in various pews across the land). Blessings on your sermon work. I’ll be at a Boise version of that rally.


  2. first Saturday evening sermon writing after 4 weeks of guest preachers. Preaching tomorrow and next week, then annual leave. The 4 guest preachers all spoke about what it means to be church, and i am following that up this week with some thoughts on what it means to be part of the Uniting Church – which is what the speakers focused on.
    As i begin annual leave in 9 days, our National Assembly will be meeting and discussing a range of issues including: voluntary assisted dying, same gender marriage, domestic violence, Recognition of Sovereignty and the environmental crisis.

    back to writing, i am not used to starting with a theme and working from there.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am starting a summer series this week – seven weeks of “The Genius of Jesus” from Spill the Beans writer and good friend, Bryan Kerr.
    I am kicking things off, and then over the next few weeks will preach or lead – but not both – the joy of a summer tradition of enabling elders and others to exercise their talents.
    I am distracted.
    I have been distracted now for weeks.
    My head is not really here; I fluctuate from loving ministry, to really, really wanting to leave it all behind and take a break. There are many things going on in the parish and the church in general which leave us all feeling a bit vulnerable and a bit uncertain. I am not alone – this I know. But right now, it is hard.

    The first week of TGOJ looks at call: Jesus calling the disciples and at all the other people called to action and service through encountering Jesus.
    I also have an infant baptism.
    And it’s the Kirking of Civic week – our village festival begins tomorrow with the church service.
    So it will be busy.
    Oh yes- I also have my darling grandson visiting – another (welcome) distraction.
    Better get going while he is napping!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Blessings to you, friend. Coming out of grief is one of those things that manifests in so many different ways. Prayers for clarity and peace for you. And hello to your lovely community.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. sermon finished, a bit ‘churchy’ , it is definitely an in house sermon, but i knew that was likely. i think it will be helpful to teak about some of the issues that will be discussed at the Assembly.
    Church is…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The reality is that worship is the one time you have most people in one place. It can be the best place to get that kind of education out there. We had bulletin inserts and articles, but I’m not sure how many people read them.


  5. Good morning, all!

    Off lectionary to talk about tomorrow about the PC(USA) General Assembly. We were planning to worship outside, but it’s going to be too hot.

    Tomorrow was supposed to be a praise service, with America the Beautiful at the end. But some musical decisions were made in my absence. So I think the morning will go something like this:

    Praise God in God’s sanctuary!
    Praise God with cymbals!
    I’m a sinner and I’m going to die . . .
    Pastor, why couldn’t we have sung all patriotic songs?

    But today there’s a march to attend!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve got a graduation to attend, so I don’t think I’ll be able to march today. Glad you can go to yours!
      I gave the GA update last week, and the congregation cheered! Blessings on your preparations.


  6. A guest preacher in a beloved summer community, also celebrating Baptism. If I were home near Annapolis where people are heartbroken in wake of the latest community shooting the sermon would be very different. So struggling to be present here and with the joyous occasion.


    1. May there be a blessing in that tension. I suspect that even in a community that is celebrating, the events of the world (big and small) are likely weighing some people down. May your joy be rooted in your full experience.


  7. Even at the beginning of the week, I was focused on the woman who touched Jesus’s cloak…what strength, what determination, what desperation it must have taken after so many years of being invisible or reviled or dismissed. At the end of a week that has wearied me–and most of my congregation–so very much, I want to think about how she found that strength, because I need to do the same. And what is that touch like? What does it look like this week? I’m reflecting on the small courtesies of other shoppers at Costco yesterday (yes…Costco!), of the parish gathering last night as a multi-racial group of 20 came together to watch the movie 13th and reflect on our experience of it, of the bread of Christ in our hands as we gather around the altar for communion. I need the strength to continue to press forward toward Jesus, and the grace to receive his healing for my weary, hurting, fearful soul.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I’m having a difficult time getting going over here. I’m starting a series next week, which I’ve been working on, and I haven’t paid enough time/attention to this week’s sermon! Mark 5. I may do a first-person narrative from the perspective of…hm…I can’t even quite decide that. It’s the only idea that has come to me, so I guess the Spirit and I will run with it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t really like 5 am Sunday sermon writing, but it worked really well for me last week. I’ve been thinking about my text (1 John 2) all week, and have some thoughts but no words.


  9. I had to work ahead this week and wrote a preachable sermon (it may not be the best but is preachable) on the woman bleeding for 12 years. I flew home Wednesday and just got back today for a family situation which is hard kind of hard and has significant ramifications for our family.


    1. Elaine, the sermon is your “situational best” and my experience has been the Spirit uses that just fine. It’s tough to preach when you are in the middle of a difficult family time.


  10. I think I am going to reflect on borders: Jesus going to the borders in his ministry always meeting people at the edges; the woman who crossed social barriers and borders to touch Jesus and be healed – and how curious that Jesus feels her energy like they are two of a kind, like kindred spirits who know the presence of another..she knew he could heal her and in her healing he senses the power of God’s love and grace…and I’ll weave in Jonah who in his fury at God’s love and grace runs off to borders hoping to avoid God’s love and grace, who tries to stay stuck in his self-righteous grudge against the Ninevites – how very human of him. Both the woman and Jonah reveal aspects of the human condition – holding grudges is something we struggle with; trusting in God’s grace and love is our ever lasting hope and yet something we also struggle with, especially when it applies to those we hold grudges against….and somehow, connect all of this to baptism…all in about 5 minutes – my summer homilies are 5 minutes long (give or take a few)


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