The sound of the drum
Taken by Rev. Marilyn Pagán-Banks at a service of remembrance.

The text for this week found in Isaiah reminds me so much of the current political climate we find ourselves in today.

Read it here

This story is so familiar to what we are experiencing in this country with this seated president – that it makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time.

The blatant mockery.

The shameless hubris.

The outright disrespect.

Some say we should just stop giving 45 an audience. Maybe then, he will actually stop spewing hate and nonsense.

Maybe this is true.

However, while we can turn off the television and stop reacting to tweets—as faith leaders we ourselves cannot remain silent.

As preachers, we have to find ways to offer up words of hope, love, restoration, peace, and healing. Like Isaiah, we have to speak Good News into an atmosphere of fear, despair, and conflict.

Our silence will not save us.

Perhaps the sermon moment can be a time for remembering—a going back and reclaiming all that God has already done—so that the gathered community might recall that God has promised to never leave us nor forsake us even when Her presence isn’t readily obvious or easily felt in these times.  How are folx holding on to faith in a Living God?

Perhaps the preaching moment calls us back into community with one another.  Reminding us that worship is not only a time of prayer and praise but of fortifying our connection to one another.  What does the remnant need to hear? What binds them together, stronger?

The noise of the world can be overwhelming. Nevertheless, we must keep beating the drum of justice and love.  Silence is not an option.

Add your ideas in the comments on ways we can and should be love out loud.


Rev. Dr. Marilyn Pagán-Banks (she/her/hers/ella) is a queer womanist freedom fighter, minister, spiritual entrepreneur, teacher, and life-long learner committed to the liberation of colonized peoples, centering the marginalized, building power and creating community. She lives in Chicago with her spouse and their teenage son (pray for us), has two adult daughters and eight delightful grandchildren (!—please keep praying ;)) Dr. Pagán-Banks currently serves as executive director of A Just Harvest, pastor at San Lucas UCC, and, adjunct professor at McCormick Theological Seminary.


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2 thoughts on “Narrative Lectionary: Be Love Out Loud

  1. I am preaching for the first time as the Interim Senior Minister this Sunday… and the scripture hit me in very much the same way you expressed. I met some resistance when I proposed we would have a gathering activity of writing down the rumors folks have heard (or repeated) about the church. I will not be mentioning 45 but thinking how much these words fit this administration. Thank you for reminding me to preach hope… that God is there. Hope is so appropriate to preach over and over again in this day and always in transitional ministry. Shalom

    Liked by 1 person

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