“Will you come and follow me?”

Text: Matthew 4:12-23 (Jesus calls his first disciples) Has anyone here today watched the Netflix series “Messiah?” The ten episodes that make up Season One were released on January 1, and last week, Kim and I binge-watched them all. Set in a slightly altered version of today’s world, “Messiah” tells the story of a preacher … [Read more…]

Kingdom come

Texts: “I Happened to be Standing” by Mary Oliver * Luke 11:1-4 (“Father . . . “) Ever since I learned “The Lord’s Prayer” as a child, I have been waiting for God’s kingdom to come. But despite never-ending repetition of the prayer by myself and billions of others, God’s kingdom doesn’t seem to have … [Read more…]

“How, then, should we pray?”

Texts: an excerpt from “The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of The Lord’s Prayer” by John Dominic Crossan * Matthew 6:9-13 (“Our Father . . . “) Dear friends, Welcome to another spiritual gathering on this cold and beautiful morning in Mill Woods. Welcome to another moment in which we share our spirits in … [Read more…]

Vision 2020

Texts: “Continue” by Maya Angelou, and Matthew 2:1-18 (the flight to Egypt) On Christmas Day, a controversy broke out on Twitter when U.S Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg sent out the following tweet: “Today I join millions around the world in celebrating the arrival of divinity on earth, who came into this world not in riches … [Read more…]

Complicated joy

Texts: “Don’t hesitate,” a poem by Mary Oliver * Luke 1:26-45 (“the birth of Jesus foretold) Christmas is about simple joys. Every December, we gather with family and friends for festive meals, the exchange of gifts, and heartfelt wishes for merriment and a happy new year. We light candles and string colourful lights to brighten … [Read more…]

Out of silence

Texts: “Making Peace” by Denise Levertov * Luke 1:18-25 (waiting in silence) “No justice, no peace!” This slogan has been a staple at protest marches for years. It also describes the type of peace heralded by angels at the birth of Jesus over 2,000 years ago in the Roman Empire of Caesar Augustus. Caesar had … [Read more…]

Finding hope in the darkness

Texts: “Wild Geese” by Mary Oliver * Luke 1:1-17 (the birth of John the Baptist foretold) I have been experiencing a strange feeling of late. I think it might be . . . hope! Of course, hope is always available to us. We can let it flood into our hearts just by remembering our dependence … [Read more…]

Liliana’s story

Liliana Angel has been the Office Administrator of Mill Woods United Church since February 2018. Below is a reflection she gave on Nov. 24, 2019 about her experience as a refugee who arrived in Edmonton from Colombia in 2009. My name is Liliana Angel, and my daughter Daniela Cardona is here with me today to … [Read more…]