Sermons

The Grace Within the Waiting (01-29-17 Sermon)

Posted by on Jan 31, 2017 in Podcasts | 0 comments

“It matters how we choose to encounter transition.
In the waiting we have important work to do.
We must reflect, remember, recover
who we are and who we are not.
In the waiting we are given time to confess and repent,
to forgive and heal,
to gather our strength and courage for all that is yet to come.
In the waiting we prepare and plan,
queue up resources,
hone our skills,
negotiate connections and do everything – everything –
we can to ensure continued work
and the eventual success of an outcome
we cannot imagine and will never see.”

- Shay MacKay, “The Grace Within the Waiting”
Download 01-29-17-sermon pdf

We Rise (01-22-17 Sermon)

Posted by on Jan 25, 2017 in Podcasts | 0 comments

We keep going,
we keep rising and growing –
in dry deserts longing for freedom
on mountaintops looking at a dream
in deepest oceans where water is life -
even when they turn our power down,
we go right on with the show –
we begin again,
we rise to each new day
in a garden we don’t always control
a garden where at times
it seems growth is impossible –
and still, in the harshest of conditions, we rise;
when you rise to greet the day,
we stumble out of bed and start the coffee
and see the simple invitation:
bloom where you are planted.

- Rev. Luke Stevens-Royer, “We Rise”
Download 01-22-17-sermon pdf

Saved by Love (01-15-17 Sermon)

Posted by on Jan 18, 2017 in Podcasts | 0 comments

We are on the threshold now of a terrifying moment in our country, in our world, when we will be called as never before to clarify, to testify, to a faith that sometimes even we cannot articulate. What do we believe in, and what do you believe? The answer comes in whispers, when we’re most afraid, confused, unsure, when someone’s story touches us, someone’s courage, their humanity, and we remember: we are saved by love.

-Rev. Victoria Safford, “Saved by Love”
Download 01-15-17-sermon pdf

Are You Saved (01-08-17 Sermon)

Posted by on Jan 10, 2017 in Sermons | 0 comments

Each day, in the common
ordinary miracles of this world –
our souls are being saved;
we are saving one another
and we are saved
by a larger love holding us all
and in every breath of life and spirit and love,
we are graced with glimpses of heaven
right here – right now.

Just outside your door,
you might just find your soul at the altar of life
you might just move out into this world
with heart open, soul open
and be stopped in your tracks
by the morning sun and birdsong
by crayons on paper and belly laughs
by a violin, a piano
by a smile, a voice,
you might just get up
and be saved.

- Rev. Luke Stevens-Royer, “Are You Saved?”
Download 01-08-17-sermon pdf

A Swept Threshold (01-01-17 Sermon)

Posted by on Jan 6, 2017 in Podcasts | 0 comments

Sweep away that which is unhealthy –
clear out that which is in our way –
and hold on to the things we have missed
and find their rightful place –
so that we might nourish joy and love
instead of clutter and obscurity.
Don’t ignore the mess –
but don’t let it clutter your spirit anymore –
you can’t breathe the toxic air
of misogyny, xenophobia, racism
that keeps filling our airwaves –
we can’t breath that air and stay healthy
and ready to face each new day
without knowing where to find the clean air
to renew and refresh the soul.

-Rev. Luke Stevens-Royer, “A Swept Threshold”
Download 01-01-17-sermon pdf

Light Within Light (12-11-16 Sermon)

Posted by on Dec 14, 2016 in Podcasts | 0 comments

At this time of year, in these darkening days, every ancient story we have ever heard whispers the same promise: the light will return, but you have to go and meet it. The light will come back, but you have got to kindle lights to guide it back. The light will return because you have kept an ember of it burning all along – your hope, your faith, your resistance, your resilience, your outrage, your tenderness, your love – these little lights, the lights within you and among you, are important. This is the light of the world – and darkness shall not, the darkness cannot, overcome it.

-Rev. Victoria Safford, “Light Within Light”
Download 12-11-16-sermon pdf

Altared Stories (11-27-16 Sermon)

Posted by on Nov 29, 2016 in Podcasts | 0 comments

It starts, as so often it does,
when the table is set. The candles lit.
The stories told, the prayer offered, the food shared.
Here, at the table,
we hold what matters: love. justice. beauty. grace. resilience.
Here, we bless our work:
do justice, love mercy, walk humbly.
Here, at the feast,
many traditions are celebrated
many scriptures are read
many names give us glimpses of glory in our midst.
We become nourishment for each other.
We confess to each other how we have failed.
We encourage each other in the longings of our hearts.
And thread by thread,
we weave the fabric back together
until every table is an altar
and every meal shared is a sacrament
and every story told is one more stitch
toward something that can hold us all.

- Rev. Luke Stevens-Royer, “Altared Stories”
Download 11-27-16-sermon pdf

Beyond All Naming (11-20-16 Sermon)

Posted by on Nov 22, 2016 in Podcasts | 0 comments

Prayer

What about the poor?
What about people who are hungry, homeless, mentally ill,
the ones for whom no place is set at our table of abundance?
What about those families, those children,
who flee poverty or war or gangs or rape or threat of death to come here,
who have no place else on this earth to go?
What about our Muslim neighbors?
What about our queer family,
so many beloveds so profoundly at risk?
What about our planet earth?

Spirit of life, beyond all names and naming,
help us to hold what matters most,
and help us hold together.

Bless the food to our use, this Thanksgiving,
and our lives to glad service.
AMEN

- Rev. Victoria Safford, “Beyond All Naming”
Download 11-20-16-sermon pdf

Keep On Keeping On (11-13-16 Sermon)

Posted by on Nov 14, 2016 in Podcasts | 0 comments

Hold what you believe in. Take a breath and find it. Hold it in your mind. Hold a picture of our sanctuary, filled with people, filled with light, and know that we’re all holding you. Hold what you believe in like a chalice of light before your eyes, and travel on toward it, as you go to class or work or go to lunch or on the bus. Everywhere you go, take a breath, and with new resolve, hold what matters most.

- Rev. Victoria Safford, “Keep On Keeping On”
Download 11-13-16-sermon pdf

American Gospel (11-06-16 Sermon)

Posted by on Nov 9, 2016 in Podcasts | 0 comments

This is no moment to bail out and no moment for despair, because if we give up, then truly all is lost. This is a moment for people of faith (I’m talking about liberal faith – small l – the progressive, open, free-faith tradition, Unitarian Universalists and many, many others, people planted on the side of love) – this is a moment for people of faith to rise up and show up and speak out, not just on Tuesday, but on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and all the days ahead of us, the four years and more years stretching out in front of us, and in front of our children. Election Day is the beginning of the struggle, not the end. We must not be dis-couraged, must not let our courage be crushed. We need to re-gather our vision, re-collect our story, reconstitute our confidence in the country that is our country.

-Rev. Victoria Safford, “American Gospel”
Download 11-06-16-sermon pdf