Recent Sermons

Below are excerpts from some recent sermons.  You can also explore the full list since June 2015.  Some sermons include the podcast at the bottom of the page, with older podcasts from 2013-2015 still available. 

Preaching from St. Stephen’s Pulpit


February 7, 2016
Luke 9:28-43a Transfiguration of Our Lord We here in Williamsburg are known to the people of our VA Synod headquarters in Salem as “flatlanders.”  Indeed, one of the questions that serves as an icebreaker at our youth retreats is “Do you prefer the mountains or the beach?”  Even though Jesus like to hang around with fisherman, Jesus would have claimed both.  Mountaintops in the Bible are places of revelation and extraordinary encounters. They are places of holy mystery that eludes our full understanding.  How fitting that Luke’s account of the Transfiguration, transpires on a mountaintop. Jesus took his inner…

Receiving the Word of God. Being the Word of God.

January 31, 2016
  Jeremiah 1:4-10; Luke 4:[14-19]20-30    Fourth Sunday After the Epiphany     January 31, 2016               What hostility both Jeremiah and Jesus encounter! Did you notice God’s promise of fidelity and protection to Jeremiah, as well as God’s warning that the people will give him a hard time?  "Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD."  Then, remember what Jesus faces after the people listen to his words: When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage.  They got up, drove him out of the…

Jesus Enounters Us In Community. We Make Christ Known Through Our Community

January 17, 2016
1 Corinthians 12:1-11     Second Sunday After the Epiphany     January 17, 2016               Everything comes as gift from God.  This day of life is a gift from God.  The food we have eaten today has been a gift from God.  The clothes that we are wearing are a gift from God.  Our health on this day, our mobility so that we can gather together as church today – these are gifts from God. Even our faith in Jesus the Christ is a gift from God!  We cannot, on our own, decide to have faith.  We can’t make…

The Heaven was Opened

January 10, 2016
  Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 Baptism of Our Lord     January 10, 2016   Christmas is over, and here we are early in January.  A new year offers energy and hope for new beginnings.  We are ten days into the secular new year.  Have you broken any of your New Year’s resolutions yet?  Maybe a better way to ask this is, have you kept any of your New Year’s resolutions?  I’ve gained wisdom in my older years.  I don’t bother to make any resolutions.  Maybe you have stopped, too. Still, the whole concept of making New Year’s resolutions is fascinating. …

What Child Is This?

January 3, 2016
John 1:1-18     Second Sunday of Christmas     January 3, 2016               As a new year begins, do you take stock?  Do you remember the joys and the sorrows of the year past?  Do you give thanks to God for the blessings of 2015?  (Blessings come out of times of suffering, you know, as well as during times of celebration.)  Do you wonder what God might have in mind for you during this year of our Lord, 2016? The Greek word for time that passes, from day-to-day and year-to-year, is chronos.  We call it chronological time.  Historians give…

Silent Night

December 25, 2015
Luke 2:1-14(15-20) Christmas Eve  December 24, 2015   Have you ever taken time just to observe life happening around you?  Have you noticed?  Life is noisy!  Doors opening and shutting, phones ringing, and televisions on. Around the office, people engage in conversation and catch up in with the latest news, sometimes with background music playing, and you can hear the tapping of keyboards.   In my office, we have the joy of listening to college students who stop by and preschoolers excitedly on their way upstairs to participate in their weekly rituals of Wacky Wednesday. There is no doubt that,…

Your Kingdom Come: Hope For an End to Hunger and Poverty

December 20, 2015
Luke 1:39-55     Fourth Sunday of Advent     December 20, 2015               In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly order of Abijah. His wife was a descendant of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.  Both of them were righteous before God, living blamelessly according to all the commandments and regulations of the Lord.  But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were getting on in years. Once when he was serving as priest before God and his section was on duty, he was…

Your Kingdom Come: Hope for Peace

December 14, 2015
  Philippians 4:4-6 Advent 3     December 13, 2015   Our Advent theme is centered on hope for God’s kingdom to come, something we pray for every week when we pray the Lord’s Prayer. Today, we highlight our Hope for Peace.  In our readings this morning, we hear Isaiah tell the people, “With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.” Paul writes to the Philippians, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.” Hope, and peace, and rejoicing!  It is all so uplifting!  And then we hear John the Baptizer chastise us in…

Your Kingdom Come: Hope for an End to Fear

December 7, 2015
Luke 1:67-79      Advent 2      December 6, 2015 What are you afraid of? Are you afraid of what people think? Are you fearful about whether your job will last, or your money will last through your retirement? Do you fear for the future of your children or grandchildren? Most of us are fearful of terrorism. Some are fearful that any Syrian refugee might be a terrorist. Some are even fearful that any American citizen who is a Muslim might be a terrorist! Did you see the despicable behavior of a white guy in Fredericksburg, during a…