Advent 1, 2021 – Sermon

(Modified 2021-11-28: Added audio recording of this sermon)

Jeremiah 33:14-16
Psalm 25:1-9
1 Thessalonians 3:9-13​​
Luke 21:25-36

November 28, 2021
St. Mary’s Regina
Advent 1
Year C

by Paula Foster

Audio recording of this sermon

Every so often, we get a strong reminder that the ways of God are not the ways of the world.  According to the ways of the world, Christmas is lighten-up time…one month out of twelve when we give ourselves permission (perhaps guardedly because of Covid) to go to parties and buy gifts for friends and family and decorate our homes with trees, lights and ornaments of every kind. It is the season of eggnog and sweets and assorted beverages when the instinct to purchase is hallowed and overeating is required.  Whatever else is going on in the world, Christmas is a time to rise above it…to be happy, to be at peace, to anticipate birth.​

The ways of God are less cheerful, overall.  They offer us no shortcuts to joy.  If the church calendar is any indication, things always get darker before they get light. No matter how much we’d like to take a straight road to Christmas, there are these dark days of Advent to go through first.  Advent leads us down a road that leads through the graveyard of our sinfulness, through the wilderness, and through a river of repentance.  There is a lot of waiting along the way, waiting and telling the truth about all the scary things that can happen before the birth of real joy takes place.

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Remembrance, 2021 – Sermon

(Modified 2021-11-14 Added audio recording of this sermon)

Daniel 12:1-3
Psalm 16
Hebrews 10:11-25
Mark 13:1-8

 November 14,2021
St. Mary’s Regina
Proper 33
Year B

Audio recording of this sermon

Have you ever been afraid of something?  When I was a child, I was really afraid of the dark and of cockroaches. (pause) and truthfully, they both still bother me.  There are cockroaches in El Paso, Texas (where I come from)…. BIG BUGS that inhabit cool, dark places like garages, cupboards, and basements and they scurry around at night in particular, which may have aggravated my fear of the dark.  I hate being around them… I hate it when they startle me…. it doesn’t make any difference that I am a hundred times bigger then they are…. when one scurries across my path, my heart pounds, adrenaline rushes through my body and I instantly want to run the other way.  Don’t even suggest that I simply step on it and kill it. The crunchy, splatty sound they make underneath my foot makes my skin crawl. I have tried over the years to talk myself out of this fear, but the last time I was home, I had to steel myself every time I had to walk into the garage, because I KNEW that there might be a roach out there.  It was a great relief for me as I began my northern migration, to realize that there aren’t as many cockroaches up here as there are in El Paso because Cockroaches frighten me.

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