A Community of Awe and Wonder: A Sermon for the Fourth Sunday after Easter

Today after our 10:00 service, you are invited to join the Outreach Committee in the Guild Hall for a presentation of its work over the last year and an opportunity for you to help shape the future outreach programs of Grace Church. In a way, this is another moment in a long conversation we’ve been having at Grace. We’ve been asking similar questions in different ways over the years as we seek to respond to our mission to be the church on Madison’s Capitol Square, to share the good news of Jesus Christ and to share his love in our community and the world. Today’s conversation, while focused on outreach, is part of the longer conversation that included the master-planning process. Ours is also one tiny conversation in a much larger conversation across the Episcopal Church and across Christianity throughout this nation as we discern our way forward in this uncertain age. Continue reading

The Good Shepherd, Mother’s Day, and the Power of Images: A Sermon for The Fourth Sunday of Easter

The past few weeks, I’ve had a number of interesting, often dispiriting conversations. I’ve listened to homeless individuals or families who are struggling to get on their feet, gain some stability, and make new lives for themselves. I’ve talked to academics on the job market whose hopes and dreams for a tenure-track job, the goal for which they’ve been working so hard for so many years, seems little more than pie in the sky. I’ve talked to people who are hurting in all sorts of ways and grasping for something to hold onto in difficult, sometimes hopeless circumstances. Continue reading