Sunday, November 25, 2018

Times Ending, Times Beginning

Father Richard's sermon for November 25, 2018

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Sunday, November 18, 2018

Consecration Sunday

Father Richard's sermon for November 18, 2018

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Sunday, November 11, 2018

The Power Of Faith And Belief

Father Richard's sermon for November 11, 2018

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Friday, November 9, 2018

Padre's Post-The Season of All Saints and Thanksgiving

It is the eve of my mother's 100th birthday. (She celebrated 84 of them upon the earth). I was made aware, just today, that she was born the day before the official end of World War I (Nov 11, 1918). It is appropriate, for I always knew her as a woman of peace - she was quite remarkable in many ways. She lived for the sake of so many others while possessing a deep contentment and independence. In this month of remembering the communion of saints, she remains high upon my list.

It is good to remember the great ones from life and history - the persons who lived with grace and courage, who manage to contribute more than they consume - encourage more than they criticize - give thanks more than they take for granted.

I am presently reading "The Book Of Joy, Lasting Happiness In A Changing World", written from a five day retreat and conversation between Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama - talk about great ones! Early in the book the Dalai Lama responds to Bishop Tutu's curiosity as to how the Dalai Lama manages to be authentic, humble, and approachable while being so revered. The Dalai Lama responded, "I have always thought of myself as one of the seven billion other persons on the planet. I am one of all of them and so I am one with all of them. From that place I have always tried to make people aware that the ultimate source of happiness is a healthy body and a warm heart."

Remembering the saints is timely medicine following the elections. We need to hear wise words from well lived lives. See again the images of those who shared and even gave up their lives for the sake others. We need to recognize compassion and empathy as necessary ingredients for a great life and certainly a great nation.

So, conjure the memories of the great people from your life. Recall those teachers, relatives, workmates, and alumni. Recall and re-read your heroes from history - and realize, they were simply one of a multi-billion (depending on how long ago they lived) people on the earth... just like you me.

Happy Birthday Eve, Rita. Thanks for being a great mom, and a remarkable person.

Fr. Richard

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Padre's Post-Why So Long?

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only."
Charles Dickens 1812-1870

I thought of this quote while absorbing the news of yet another mass shooting, this time in Thousand Oaks, CA. I realized we live in one of those times, like the decades prior to abolition, civil rights movement, etc., when the future readers of history will wonder "Why did it take so long to make reasonable and necessary changes in laws and attitudes?"

Fr. Richard

Monday, November 5, 2018

Padre's Post-Feast Of All Saints

The litany of names scrolled upon the screen each year at the Feast of All Saints is profound. All who have died from this parish for the past 130+ years are remembered, if only for the time it takes to roll from top to bottom of screen. But, in that second of visual remembrance, a past saint's life in the parish literally flashes before us.

For me, whose life in this parish is a brief eighteen years, names such as Cheryl Lakin, Diane McCord, John Eklem, Naomi Manton, Larry Bailey, Lee Lacey, Frank King, to name just a few, recall volumes of friendship, shared meals, parish life, precious wisdom, loving service, life in community...

The names of all who lived and shared and hence died from this parish remind me that what I experience at St. Andrew is more like family than it is congregation. Life here is precious, and those with whom we have shared it and are no longer with us, are missed and beloved.

Come throughout November as we remember the communion of saints with whom we share eternal life.

Fr. Richard

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Padre's Post-The Season Of All Saints

In all sacred traditions there is pilgrimage - journeys to explore holy places and cultivate intimacy with the mystery of the divine in the world and our own lives.

Every year we walk the sacred journey through the life of Christ from All Saints to Easter it is a communal pilgrimage filled with both familiar and revelatory experiences.

Tomorrow, Nov. 4, the pilgrimage begins as we join the communion of saints, remembering their lives and gifts and influence as we seek to be the beloved community in our day.

Fr. Richard