Leora Weitzman's Homily from September 25, 2011

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Leora Weitzman delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on September 25, 2011.  The readings that day from the common lectionary were Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32, Philippians 2:1-13, and Matthew 21:23-32. I’ve always identified with the first child – the one who resists but ultimately does the right thing.  I’ve prided myself on reliability and follow-through.  This week, I met my inner second child. On Monday, I rediscovered that I was scheduled to teach today from 9 to 6.  Rediscovered because I did originally agree to the date; I just forgot to enter it in my planner, and …

Jim Penczykowski's Homily from September 18, 2011

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The following homily was delivered by Jim Penczykowski at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on September 18, 2011 – the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time. Our scripture today invites us to examine some of our base instincts, some of the characteristics we find least attractive about ourselves. In our first reading from the Book of Jonah we have Yahweh in the role of “anger management counselor” utilizing the first documented example of Rational-Emotive Therapy. Anyone who has prayed the psalms is aware that some are replete with calls for Yahweh to wreak vengeance on the psalmist’s enemies.  Some of …

Mike Sweitzer-Beckman's Reflection on the Gospel from September 11, 2011

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Mike Sweitzer-Beckman delivered the following reflection on the Gospel on September 11, 2011, the Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time.  The lectionary readings for the day included Genesis 50:15-21 and Matthew 18:21-35. Today, President Barack Obama and George W. Bush have gathered in Lower Manhattan for a solemn remembrance of the attacks ten years ago today.  The past couple weeks, I have been so saturated with commemorations of September 11, 2001 – ten years ago today.  It’s been all over the newspapers, email alerts from socially conscious organizations, and on NPR.  So coming up with something new to share with all …

Lynne Smith's Homily from August 28, 2011 on Matthew 16:21-28

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Lynne Smith, OSB, delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly on August 28, 2011.  The Gospel reading for the day was Matthew 16:21-28. Imagine what Peter’s thoughts might have been after this exchange with Jesus. “But I love you. I don’t want you to suffer or die. Besides, you are the Messiah. You are supposed to free us from the Romans – not be killed yourself. Bad things shouldn’t happen to good people, let alone to you, the Messiah. If they kill YOU, what will they do to ME? If YOU are put to death, what hope is there for …

Leora Weitzman's Homily from Sunday Assembly on August 21, 2011: Not Always So

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The following homily was delivered by Leora Weitzman at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on August 21, 2011.  The readings from the common lectionary for the day included Isaiah 51:1-6, Romans 12:1-8 and Matthew 16:13-20. The essence of Buddhism, I once read, can be expressed in two words:  Not … Always … So. A lot of things are not always so in today’s readings.  In Isaiah, what was desert… becomes garden.  The earth itself, and the heavens… will one day vanish.  Despite this, salvation… is forever.  Salvation may look, from time to time, like gardens, or like life on …

Libby Caes' Homily from August 7, 2011

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Libby Caes delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on August 7, 2011. The readings from the lectionary for the day included I Kings 19:9-18, Romans 10:5-15, and Matthew 14:22-33. Libby Caes is the oncology and palliative care chaplain at UW Hospital and Clinics. She is ordained by the Mennonite Church USA but makes herself at home in the larger ecumenical community. She received her M.Div. at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary (now Palmer Seminary) in Philadelphia, PA.  Focus statement: The invitation the Old Testament and gospel readings is to live our lives in our God given, …

Patti LaCross' Homily at Sunday Assembly from July 31, 2011

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Patti LaCross delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly on July 31, 2011. In the fullness of summer, even occasional swimmers need no second invitation to come to the water; In this cranky, miserly political and economic scene, People everywhere seek welcome, bread and milk as they struggle to keep their bearings, and even feed themselves and their families. The refreshment offered in today’s readings from second Isaiah and Matthew’s Gospel is perfectly attuned to our needs at this end of a warm, dry July. And in the comfort of this chapel, we pause in order that the rich images …

Roberta Felker’s Homily from July 24, 2011

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Roberta Felker delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on July 24, 2011.  The readings from the common lectionary for the day were 1 Kings 3:5-12, Romans 8:26-39, and Matthew 13:31-33. Most of the gospel readings this month come from a collection of parables, sometimes called the sermon on the water or the Kingdom parables, stories that form the structural and thematic heart of Matthew.  We can view them as concrete examples, intended to help us simple folks who might not otherwise understand these lofty spiritual matters. And it also may be that through parables, Jesus was reminding us …

Wayne Sigelko's Homily from Sunday Assembly on July 17, 2011

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Wayne Sigelko delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly eucharist at Holy Wisdom Monastery on July 17, 2011.  The readings from the common lectionary that day were Isaiah 44:6-8, Romans 8:12-25, and Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. Weeds and Wailing vs. Wheat and Waiting One of the realities of homily preparation in the 21st century is that you can type a passage into Google and instantly get a couple of dozen commentaries and sermons on the topic.  In doing so with today’s gospel I found that the results could be divided into two neat, if unequal, categories.  The first and far more …

Jim Penczykowski's Homily from July 3, 2011

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The following homily was delivered by Jim Penczykowski at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on July 3, 2011.   Does anyone here have an identical twin? Are identical twins truly identical in every respect or can we say that even those who share identical chromosomes are unique? I dare say that most of us relish the thought that “I am unique in all the world.” Not only individual persons, but also groups and communities of persons fancy themselves as unique in the entire world. We like to set ourselves apart. We like to see ourselves as special. We also …