Tag Archives: transformation

Resurrection and Transformation

laundry-basket-webA sermon preached at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Wilton, CT on the 4th Sunday of Easter, based on Acts 9:36-43.

There was a conference at Virginia Seminary this past Friday and Saturday called “Missional Voices.” It was a gathering of Episcopalians from around the church who have a vision of living into becoming a missional church again, much like the early church.

Missional ministry is defined by its advocates as:

“a Christian community that crosses boundaries to embody and participate in God’s mission – loving the world into wholeness – in all that we do: prayer, worship, preaching, teaching, loving service, and daily life.”

Listening to the conference being live streamed Friday, I heard details about a growing missional initiative called Laundry Love. Its founder, a former drug addict and homeless guy, named Christian Kassoff, was one of the presenters. Fully tattooed and pierced, he was nervous talking in front of an audience, but his demeanor calmed as he began to tell the story of Laundry Love.

Christian talked about his hard past and about his love/hate affair with organized Christianity. It was in living at the edges with others who are followers of Christ that he found wholeness, not in a church building. After finding sobriety, he met “T-Bone,” a homeless gentleman living in Ventura, California and regularly visited with him on the street. In one particular conversation, Christian asked, “T-Bone, how can I come alongside your life in a way that would matter?” T-Bone’s response was honest and practical. “If I had clean clothes I think people would treat me like a human being.” Continue reading Resurrection and Transformation

Abundance & Transformation

A sermon preached at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, Wilton, Connecticut on Epiphany 2, January 20, 2013.

winejarsJohn 2:1-22

We have finally, fully entered the season of Epiphany. With the change of color to green, we have an outward symbol of the ongoing life of the church. While the ground may be frozen outside, it is a green, growing season signifying growth in discipleship and new life as we come to know Jesus through signs and symbols.  We’ve heard how the magi and then John the Baptist proclaimed Jesus’ presence in the world. Epiphany is a time of transformation as we walk along with the disciples traveling with Jesus throughout the Judean countryside.

Later in the Gospel of John it says that Jesus did “many miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples” (John 20:31). Miracles are about transformation, and today we heard the story of the very first one – at Cana in Galilee, about nine miles northwest of his home in Nazareth (John 2:1–11).

Through Jesus’ action, ordinary water was transformed so the abundance of a wedding could continue to be celebrated.  Water turned to wine – the best wine.

Transformation occurs all around us all the time. We often talk about change – for good or for bad – but do we ever focus on the actual transformations that happens in our every day lives? Continue reading Abundance & Transformation