• Content

  • Pages

  • Upcoming Events

    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 2, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 9, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 16, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…

Epiphany 3C RCL January 27, 2019

Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10
Psalm 19
1 Corinthians 12:12-31a
Luke 4:14-21

It is so good to see you after two Sundays of having to cancel our services. I will try to be brief because we have Annual Meeting today.

Our first reading, from the Book of Nehemiah, is one of the most important passages in the Bible. The people have returned from exile and they are rebuilding the temple. The leaders gather all the people in the square, and they read passages from the law and interpret them so that everyone can understand. This reading takes an entire day. The people are so deeply moved that they weep when they hear the reading. They are hearing and understanding the guidelines that govern their life together. This is an inspiring moment in the life of God’s people.

In our reading from his First Letter to the Corinthians, Paul is telling the Corinthians and us that the Church is the Body of Christ. Each member is precious and necessary to the health of the whole Body. The Spirit bestows many gifts, and each gift is as valuable as every other gift. It is just as important to balance the books, sweep the floor, or paint the window trim as it is to preach an excellent sermon. Our Lord calls all of us to work together and to offer our gifts. We are so close that, as Paul says, “If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice with it.” We are all in this together, and what binds us together is the love of Christ.

In our gospel, Jesus is teaching and healing in Galilee. He goes to his hometown, Nazareth, and goes to the synagogue. When he stands up to read, the scroll of Isaiah is given to him.  Jesus reads,“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor…to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind…to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” That is a description of his ministry and of our ministry.

Today, with these inspiring readings in our minds and hearts, we hold our Annual Meeting. I suspect that most of us are not thrilled by administrative meetings. I know they aren’t my favorite thing.

There are many ways to think about the Church. We can think of it as an institution that has been around for two thousand years and has many structures and procedures and so on. Then we can think of ourselves as the community gathered. Yes, we have to deal with things like electing delegates to convention so that we can keep things running and this year elect a new bishop. Here at Grace, I think we try to take care of these things as efficiently as we can. And we also pray at every meeting we have, which is so important. We ask God’s guidance. We realize we are in the presence of God, that the risen Christ is here in our midst.

And we are gathered here today as a community of faith and as part of an institution that has been around for a long time. We love God. And, because we love God, we truly love and care about each other. We do see ourselves as the Body of Christ, called to carry out the ministries mentioned in the passage from Isaiah. We are here to bring good news and to share God’s love and healing and forgiveness with others.

Thank you for your faithfulness, for your generous offering of your many gifts, for your resilience and humor, and for your love for God, for each other, and for all people. These are precious gifts.

Risen Lord, thank you for being in our midst. Lead us and guide us, O Lord.  Amen.

 

%d bloggers like this: