Narrative Lectionary: “Tell us the truth!” (Jeremiah 29:1,4-14)

“For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11) The verse above is one which is often quoted. It can be found on bookmarks, as a framed picture, on the front of journals… Read More

11th Hour Preacher Party: Year’s End

Sunday comes again, this time the last Sunday of the Liturgical Year. How will you celebrate? As you work on your sermon this week, how can we help? What does your congregation need from you? What is the word you are being called to offer?  As we finish the year, will you follow the Revised… Read More

Revised Common Lectionary: Unveiling

As we approach the end of a calendar year, this week’s lectionary readings reference the end of time. At least, that’s what the apocalyptic readings of Daniel and Revelation seem to be about, at first blush. The Ancient One takes the throne, and Jesus arrives on the clouds. What we forget sometimes is that “apocalypse”… Read More

Narrative Lectionary: Floods of justice (Amos 1:1-2; 5:14-15, 21-24)

Toward the end of October of this year, the South of Scotland endured some severe rain and flooding. Scots are used to rain but this was toward the extreme end of our tolerance, with fields and town centres filled with water, roads made dangerous, railway bridges closed (just in case) and two foot bridges washed… Read More

11th Hour Preacher Party – Praise, Praise, Praise??

As I write, it is stupid early on Friday morning; and I am writing now because once again this week I have a stupid busy day. And once again, if I don’t do something on the “normal” task list for the week then it will get left behind. “Normally” at least in these para pandemic,… Read More

The Pastoral is Political: Questions and Challenges

One of the most prominent topics of conversation in The Pastoral is Political has been an ongoing discussion of just what is political and what is appropriate to speak to from the pulpit (or, more broadly, what action is appropriate for ordained clergy to take and what is not). There are members of our congregations… Read More

11th Hour Preacher Party: What Do You Want Me to Do?

In the RCL reading, Jesus asks Bartimaeus, “what do you want me to do?” Today I ask, what do you want us to do? As you work on your sermon this week, how can we help? What does your congregation need from you? What is the word you are being called to offer?  During this… Read More

Revised Common Lectionary: Listening before Giving

Jesus demonstrates a beautiful lesson in this week’s Gospel reading: do not assume that you know the needs or desires of another person. Bartimaeus called out to Jesus for mercy. He could have asked Jesus for any number of things. Though he’s known to us now simply as a blind beggar, certainly there was more… Read More

Revised Common Lectionary – Why?

Proper 24, Year B: Job 38:1-7 (34-41), Hebrews 5: 10-10, Mark 10:35-45 Track one lectionary preachers are continuing the story of Job this week, after being left last week with Job’s lament. Job has spent the last 37 chapters asking why, defending himself as his friends pose theology after theology all ending in what Job… Read More