Sunday, April 20, 2014THE SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION: EASTER DAY
Welcome to the festival of eternal life! What happened in Jesus Christ is a gift for all who love his appearing and put their trust in him. The fact that Jesus Christ is risen is hope not only for the other side of death, but for this side as well. Our life is hid with Christ in God! We need not fear the grave, and have reason to get up gladly every morning. Each day, this day, is made by the Lord for us to live and do his will. This is the Day which the Lord hath made: let us rejoice and be glad in it!
Alleluia. Christ is risen! The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia.
--from Fr Mead's 2010 sermon for Easter Day
Other sermons in the archive about Easter and the resurrection:
Christ's Resurrection Changes Everything (2013) by Fr Mead
He Shall Gather All His People (2012) by Fr Mead
Probing the Wounds (2012) by Fr Spurlock
Finally Glad (2012) by Fr Austin
The Day of Resurrection (2012) by Fr Mead
The Resurrection of the Body, and the Life Everlasting. Amen. (2012) by Fr Austin
The Third Day He Rose Again from the Dead (2012) by Fr Austin
The Strange World of the Resurrection (2010) by Fr Austin
Almighty God, who through thine only-begotten Son Jesus Christ hast overcome death and opened unto us the gate of everlasting life: Grant that we, who celebrate with joy the day of the Lord’s resurrection, may be raised from the death of sin by thy life-giving Spirit; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Saturday, April 19, 2014HOLY SATURDAY
O God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of thy dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on this holy Sabbath, so we may await with him the coming of the third day, and rise with him to newness of life; who now liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Friday, April 18, 2014GOOD FRIDAY
Over the years, we've had many guest preachers meditate on the seven last words of Christ at the Three Hours Devotion. Among them:
Jesus' Seven Last Words from the Cross (2012) by The Right Rev'd Dr Robert Gillies, Bishop of Aberdeen
Meditations on the Seven Last Words of Christ (2011) by Canon Andrew Diestche
Meditation on the Seven Last Words of Christ (2010) by The Very Reverend Joseph Britton
Seven Addresses on the Last Words of Our Lord from the Cross (2007) by Fr Andrew
Among some of the sermons preached at the 5:30pm Good Friday Liturgy are these:
Crucifixion & Clarity (2013) by Fr Daniels
The Blood is on Our Hands (2012) by Fr Spurlock
Father, Into Thy Hands I Commend My Rubbish (2011) by Fr Spurlock
I Thirst (2010) by Fr Austin
A Sermon for Good Friday (2008) by Fr Mead
Almighty God, we beseech thee graciously to behold this thy family, for which our Lord Jesus Christ was contented to be betrayed, and given up into the hands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the cross; who now liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Thursday, April 17, 2014MAUNDY THURSDAY
As you think about the approach to climax, on many levels, that Maundy Thursday represents, these sermons from previous Maundy Thursdays might be helpful:
To Love One Another (2011) by Fr Austin
The Offerings (2010) by Fr Fletcher
Christ's Humiliation and Love (2009) by Fr Austin
A Sermon for Maundy Thursday (2007) by Fr Mead
A Sermon for Maundy Thursday (2006) by Fr Stafford
Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on the night before he suffered, did institute the Sacrament of his Body and Blood: Mercifully grant that we may thankfully receive the same in remembrance of him who in these holy mysteries giveth us a pledge of life eternal, the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who now liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Sunday, April 13, 2014THE SUNDAY OF THE PASSION: PALM SUNDAY
The liturgies on the morning of Palm Sunday are designed by the Book of Common Prayer to take us through the week to come. So, since this is Holy Week, Palm Sunday covers both the triumphant entry into Jerusalem (the Blessing of the Palms and the Palm Procession) as well as Christ's Passion, which we unpack each day of the rest of the week. The idea here is that a person could attend church only on Sundays and still participate in the entirety of Holy Week and Easter: Palm Sunday takes us through Christ's Crucifixion, and then Easter Sunday celebrates Christ's Resurrection.
Of course, we're not suggesting you skip the rest of Holy Week—indeed, we encourage you to spend the entire week with us. But if you are wondering why the morning liturgies on Palm Sunday end with Christ Crucified, you now have your answer. The church is structured so that Sunday worshippers get the gist. If you seek more than the gist, you're in luck: at Saint Thomas, we know how to dwell on the details. You are most welcome to join us as we mark each day of Holy Week in scripture, song, meditation and prayer.
Even if you cannot join us in person for everything, please know that all choral services throughout the week are webcast live and then available on-demand.
Almighty and everlasting God, who, of thy tender love towards mankind, hast sent thy Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our flesh, and to suffer death upon the cross, that all mankind should follow the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may both follow the example of his patience, and also be made partakers of his resurrection; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Sunday, April 6, 2014THE FIFTH SUNDAY IN LENT
At the morning services this year for the Fifth Sunday in Lent, we have the account of Christ's raising Lazarus from the dead, a resuscitation more than a resurrection, insofar as Lazarus would live only to die again. Still, it is here that Christ makes it clear to Martha that he is "the resurrection and the life."
The irony is that the raising of Lazarus, a life-giving event, led to the crucifixion of Christ; his enemies were now more than ever determined to kill him. Yet, it is by the way of the cross that Christ defeated death, once and for all. So, the raising of Lazarus is very much a sign of what it to come, made complete in Christ’s death and resurrection. Lazarus would die again; but Christ's death led to the death of death, to life beyond death, to death no more.
O Almighty God, who alone canst order the unruly wills and affections of sinful men: Grant unto thy people that they may love the thing which thou commandest, and desire that which thou dost promise; that so, among the sundry and manifold changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Sunday, March 30, 2014THE FOURTH SUNDAY IN LENT (Laetare)
Laetare means "rejoice," and on this Sunday we take a break from the austerity of Lent and add some color: rose vestments on the clergy and flowers on the altar.
At the morning services today, we have the story of the man born blind, given sight by Jesus.
In a 2002 sermon, the Rector points out two important developments in this story: "First, there is the blind beggar who is given sight, and who then progressively sees ever more clearly in every way that it is possible to see, including insight. Second, there are Jesus’ adversaries, who have physical eyesight but who, in their determined opposition to Jesus, become increasingly blind. The story contrasts the progress of faith with the progress of unbelief."
See: Faith with Open Eyes (2002) by Fr Mead
Gracious Father, whose blessed Son Jesus Christ came down from heaven to be the true bread which giveth life to the world: Evermore give us this bread, that he may live in us, and we in him; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.