Sermons by Rev. Javier Almendárez-Bautista
The Rev. Javier Almendárez-Bautista considers what it means to find hope in the apocalypse (Mark 13:1-8): “One of the most popular stops in Israel is a fortress named Masada. It is high up on the Judean desert, overlooking the Dead Sea. In the first century BC, Herod the Great built himself a palace there on a mesa, fortified its walls and made it nearly impenetrable. And yet for all its fortification, its vast food store houses, its complex aqueduct system and ingenious engineering, it is the location of a major defeat, the last stand of a host of Jewish rebels, finally fed up with imperial Roman rule.”View Sermon
The Rev. Javier Almendárez-Bautista reflects on Mark 10:35-45: “The way of Christ is not simply a matter of getting into an exclusive club. It is a matter of servant leadership and sacrifice, a matter of commitment in the thick of resistance.”View Sermon
The Rev. Javier Almendárez-Bautista reflects on Job 1:1; 2:1-10: “Before Senator Pastore sat a soft-spoken Presbyterian minister who was convinced of the value of public programming. This man had recently premiered a children’s show with low production value… Before the Senate committee, he articulated his mission as clearly as he did in every one of his shows: ‘if we can only make it clear in public television that feelings are mentionable and manageable, we will have done a great surface for mental health.'”View Sermon
We meet Jesus today in an extraordinarily human moment. Extraordinary only because of how ordinary it is; how very human Jesus seems, given our assumptions about how the son of God behaves. Today Jesus is tired….
The Rev. Javier Almendárez-Bautista considers the conflict between Jesus and the Pharisees in today’s gospel reading (Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23): “The Pharisees were actually part of a reform movement in their day and age. They were trying, like Jesus and his followers, not to burden people with the law but to bring the law into their daily life, to help the everyday person find meaning in it… Both Jesus and the Pharisees were trying to interpret the law in the light of their current situation, not demanding observance for its own sake.”View Sermon