Last Sunday Before Advent: Feast of Christ the King (Combo Post)

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Psalm(s):118, 145
Old Testament: Isaiah 19:19-25
New Testament: Romans 15:5-13
Gospel: Luke 9:11-27
Patristic Reading: Anexcerpt from a discourse on prayer by Origen

Wow! It’s been almost a year since I started this blog, and the Church once again prepares itself to contemplate the great mystery of the Incarnation, the payment of the Cross and the victory of the Empty Tomb. A victory that inaugurates the feast which we celebrate today.

The Feast of Christ the King (since renamed the Reign of Christ to remain gender neutral) is a time when the community of the faithful takes a collective breath. To recognize that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the father and that the promises of God have been realized.

More than that, this is a celebration…..a rejoicing in hope…..not of what the world was….broken, dark and sinful……..but of what the world IS a creation made new…….a world where everything is made possible.

A world where segregation, hatred, and injustice are no more. Where Jew, Gentile, women, man, slave and free live as one…….but I’ll let a better preacher than myself take the lead here…..While his message is in the context of the civil rights movement, dreams are always bigger than we can ask or imagine.

The bright day of justice will emerge, all will live in the light….. and thanks to the love of Jesus we are set free at last, if only we drop our chains! +

Morning Prayer: January 17th

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Psalms: 25
Old Testament: Isaiah 44:6-8, 21-23
New Testament: Ephesians 4:1-16

But speaking the truth in love, we must grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and knitted together by every ligament with which it is equipped, as each part is working properly, promotes the body’s growth in building itself up in love. (Ephesians 4:15-16)

Today is Martin Luther King Day….and it’s kind of appropriate that this reading from Ephesians shows up in the lectionary today.

One of the things that often gets missed when talking about Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement, is that MLK was a Baptist minister. All of his speeches, letters, and actions are deeply rooted in Gospel convictions.

His dream of a nation united, of blacks and whites holding hands was about building a nation where everyone was connected to each other….where peace and love would take the place of hatred and bigotry.

His vision was very much based on the Reign of Christ…..and the “I Have a Dream Speech” is filled with Biblical allusions and metaphors.

May we all take some time today to give thanks for the life, witness, and hope that Martin Luther King Jr. brought to this world…..and may we hold on to his dream, and never let it go. +

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