Narrative Lectionary: A Mystery Gift (1 Corinthians 15:1-26, 51-57)

This scripture is particularly poignant in this pandemic time, when we’re confronting death in different, more demanding ways than we usually do.  Some of us are overwhelmed with the number of deaths around us, and have lost people to death much too soon.  All of our lives have changed in response to the lethality of… Read More

Narrative Lectionary: Source of Love

It’s the infamous LOVE text! Read it (maybe for the umpteenth time) here. It is not unfamiliar. This text is often used in wedding and union ceremonies; sometimes ordinations and installations, too. In the Working Preacher Commentary, you can find a historical and contextual glimpse into what might have prompted the Apostle Paul to write these… Read More

RCL: The Road Home

The gospel of Luke continues the story of Easter Sunday with a resurrection appearance unique to this gospel. Following the events of early morning that first day of the week, two of Jesus’ disciples decide to go home. I wonder why? Is it just because this was their plan all along—to go home after the… Read More

RCL: Grace in the Wilderness, A Poem for Easter 2020

This was first posted at Write Out of Left Field. Easter is a challenge for preaching this year, even with these very familiar texts. I wrote the following poem as I struggle to pull sermon thoughts together. You are welcome to use it in your worship with attribution. Please share any thoughts you have on… Read More

Saturday Prayer – Resurrection

This is your resurrection promise, Holy Friend. From death, life will grow. Remind us that that new life does not always Look like what we had planned or hoped or imagined. Help us to see the new life You spread extravagantly, abundantly, beautifully, even the most unlikely places. Amen. ________________________________________________________________________________________ Jennifer Garrison Brownell serves as… Read More

RCL: From Death to Life

This was originally posted at Write Out of Left Field Those little purple faces poking up next to the sidewalk on my way out of church on Sunday were nearly my undoing. Not exactly the color purple in a field, but I noticed. I saw them innocently reaching for the sun, the first of spring… Read More

Revised Common Lectionary: Resurrection Encounters and Easter People

What gorgeous texts the Revised Common Lectionary offers us for this coming Sunday! A passage from Revelation that is perhaps known best to most of us from its myriad musical settings, from Handel’s “Messiah” to “This is the Feast of Victory”… A psalm whose text outlines God’s power to transform, as Working Preacher commentator Bobby… Read More

Revised Common Lectionary: I have seen the Lord!

Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! But not quite yet. For church professionals, we first have to endure the hard and holy week leading up to Easter. We live out the mental, emotional, and spiritual drama in real time. On Maundy Thursday, we may wash feet or share Communion, or both (hopefully with some… Read More

Narrative Lectionary: The Living and the Dead (Matthew 28:1-10)

Matthew’s gospel begins and ends with angels, bringing the same message: “Do not be afraid…oh, and also, you have a job to do.”  The first angel in Matthew instructs Joseph to make Mary his wife, before Jesus is born.  The Easter morning angel tells the women at the tomb not to be afraid, and also… Read More