Sermons


Because we are a community with a strong focus on study, service and community, we deeply appreciate challenging weekly sermons on these topics.
Below is a sampling of sermons offered in recent months by our devoted pulpit supply team, Kristabeth Atwood and Carl Hilton VanOsdall, our own Commissioned Lay Pastor, Frank Sadowski, and others who join us as guest preachers.

May 22, 2022

Rev. Carl Van Osdall

Did you ever play that game as a young person,
Or maybe as an adult?
Where you’re blindfolded and, in order to walk along, you had another person,
Maybe two, who weren’t touching you but are nearby
and gently giving verbal guidance.
“Take two steps to the left, then take four steps forward (in order to avoid running into the tree that’s not far away.” They say.
Then, “Keep on going, straight ahead for about 10 steps.”
“Okay, stop!”
“There are stairs just before you.
Lift your foot about 8 inches, and move it forward.
It’s on the first step now.”
Then, “Carefully walk up 5 steps, you can hold onto the handrail.
if you feel you need it….It’s on your right side…
And, so you, after guidance,
make your way to SOME destination, originally unknown to you,
where you’re invited to remove the blindfold and…
You’ve arrived to the place where, at least for now…
you’re supposed to be.

May 15, 2022

Kristabeth Atwood, M.Div.

One of the best things about being around young kids is the front row seat to their imagination. When our son, Ben, was young we would spend a week at camp in Maine. He and his friend Koby would go out into the woods for hours at a time, coming back only to eat and sleep with stories of ghost sightings and treasure hunts. If we had let them, they would’ve slept and eaten in those woods, too. We were glad that we were able to provide Ben with a safe place to explore nature…and his imagination.

May 8, 2022

Rev. Carl Van Osdall

Many years ago, the Indians of the plains heard the 23rd Psalm
and were much intrigued by it.
They wanted to share its beauty with the neighboring tribes
but could not because of language differences.
It was suggested they put it into the universal Indian sign language,
which was done.
Many tribes shared its inspiration and loveliness.
A white missionary, Isabel Crawford,
understood the Indian sign language so well that she could use it to portray the Psalm. Thinking it would be interesting to translate
the sign language version back into literal English she did so,
and the Indian version of the 23rd Psalm is the result.

May 1, 2022

Kristabeth Atwood, M.Div.

Have you ever experienced the letdown that comes after a long-anticipated event? Vacations sometimes have this effect. You plan and dream for months, maybe years. (With Covid, perhaps vacations were even postponed several times.) Then, the departure day arrives and you can hardly believe it. It’s better than you could have ever imagined ~ and then it’s over. You come home to piles of mail and laundry to do and a feeling that you don’t know what to do next. What now? As John O’Donohue described in our contemporary reading, “All through life, the most precious experiences seem to vanish…You look behind and see no sign even of a yesterday that was so intense.”