Sermons by Rev. Carr Holland
The Rev. Carr Holland considers Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10): “In this political season, we can find Zacchaeus. In fact, we can find several of them. Someone who has prospered and you’re not sure by what means, how they have come by their wealth, and the level of their morality. Zacchaeus was despised by others, his own people, though he was rich. He had no place, so he was viewed by some as outside of God’s grace and care. Maybe we don’t all know his feeling of alienation, but many of us know what it’s like to come to a moment when we realize what we have held as important suddenly is not.”View Sermon
Acts 11:1-18; John 13:31-35
“Where I am going, you cannot come.” Last summer, the community theater called On the Isle on Nantucket invited us to a wonderful story called The Trip to Bountiful . . . You may know the story. It’s a story about the longing for home; it is about our yearning for a place of comfort and security and stability, a place of deep acceptance and unconditional love, a place where we can be ourselves, a place and a people that feed our souls . . .
The passage of House Bill 2 recently and the social debate that’s gone on after it got me to thinking a lot this week… about how much difference there is between law and Gospel. They are never the same thing. The issues of race and forgiveness and care seldom show up in the laws that grab our attention — that is so core to the Gospel. It got me to thinking about what it means to be left out, what it means to be overlooked and not understood.
John 13:1-17, 31b-35
Memory is a terrible and a wonderful thing. As we focus on the bombings in Belgium just now, there is memory, not just of those whose lives were lost or who are scarred by the events there, but here too. Many of us may well journey back to 9/11, those we knew, how we felt. The hurt or the anger that lingers in our bones at not feeling safe anymore, not feeling always safe. And voices fill the airwaves, “Who do we blame? Who are we to watch?”…
We begin the liturgy on each of these Sundays in Lent with the Decalogue, a reciting of the Ten Commandments, a gentle prayer for mercy in the keeping of them, and then we go about making a confession acknowledging in some way we’ve not quite kept everything we intended. This reminds us that there are guideposts in our lives. There are times when we fail and when we sin.