Charles Hoffacker

The Rev. Charles Hoffacker lives in Greenbelt, Maryland, with his wife, Helena Mirtova. He is the author of A Matter of Life and Death: Preaching at Funerals from Cowley Publications. Many of his sermons appear on

Sermons and Bible Studies

An Alternative Consciousness, Proper 10 (C) – 2022

July 10, 2022

[RCL] Amos 7:7-17; Psalm 82; Colossians 1:1-14; Luke 10:25-37 Flashing through the Bible and beyond is a lightning bolt known as prophetic ministry. What prophetic ministry does, according to Bible scholar Walter Brueggemann, is generate “a consciousness and perception alternative to the consciousness and perception of the dominant culture around us.” This is not a […]

Time, Easter 5 (C) – 2022

May 15, 2022

[RCL] Acts 11:1-18; Psalm 148; Revelation 21:1-6; John 13:31-35 Our services for the Easter Season this year feature readings from the Revelation to John, the last book of the Bible and perhaps the most mysterious. Much of the drama in Revelation is centered around the throne of God and the Lamb, or as it is […]

Jesus’ Mission Statement, Epiphany 3 (C) – 2022

January 23, 2022

[RCL] Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10; Psalm 19; 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a; Luke 4:14-21 Today’s gospel presents us with Jesus’ first act of public ministry, described for us in Luke’s gospel. Following his river baptism and his long wilderness fast and temptation, Jesus returns to his home country, Galilee. Reports about him have been spreading through the […]

Risks We Can Take, Proper 21 (B) – 2021

September 26, 2021

[RCL] Esther 7:1-6, 9-10; 9:20-22; Psalm 124; James 5:13-20; Mark 9:38-50 The theme of God’s people struggling to survive in a sophisticated, alien culture appears throughout the Bible, especially in the Old Testament. This theme is central to the Book of Esther, which supplies today’s first reading. Today is the only Sunday in our three-year […]

Takers or Givers, Proper 12 (B) – 2021

July 25, 2021

RCL: [RCL] 2 Samuel 11:1-1; Psalm 14; Ephesians 3:14-21; John 6:1-21 The penultimate paragraph of this sermon, which appears in brackets below, may be omitted at services where Holy Communion is not distributed. We see it from time to time. Someone performs brave deeds, enjoys great advantages, reaches a lofty position of prominence. Defeat seems […]

Have You Been Transfigured?, Pentecost 23 (A) – November 8, 2020

November 08, 2020

[RCL] Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25; Psalm 78:1-7; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Matthew 25:1-13 Today, let’s explore the problem known as burnout and the hope we call “transfiguration”. In the name of God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In recent decades, “burnout” has become a popular word to describe a particular human problem. Burnout is commonly understood as […]

The Economics of God, Pentecost 16 (A) – September 20, 2020

September 20, 2020

[RCL] Exodus 16:2-15; Psalm 105:1-6, 37-45; Philippians 1:21-30; Matthew 20:1-16 The economics of God are not like our human economics. Time after time, we humans just do not get the economics of God. In Scripture readings for today, we have reminders of the ways we miss the point about God’s economics. We also have a […]

How Joseph Became a Gift-Giving Man, Epiphany 7 (C) – 2019

February 25, 2019

Today let’s look at one of the major stories in the Old Testament, and consider how its principal character, whose name is Joseph, changes from a man full of himself to someone who gives the gift of life. In the name of God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. What we heard just now from Genesis—Joseph’s […]

Enough to Raise the Dead, Proper 14 (B) – 2018

August 12, 2018

Travel to the city of Rome and go to the basilica named for St. Peter. Near the main entrance, you will find one of the most celebrated sculptures in the world, the Pieta of Michelangelo. Mary the mother of Jesus is shown seated. On her lap, in her arms, she holds the lifeless body of […]

This Sacred Discontinuity, Day of Pentecost (B) – 2018

May 20, 2018

The Bible and the church year commemorate many moments of grace. One of these moments of grace is what we celebrate here on this day of Pentecost: how the Holy Spirit fell like fire upon the infant church, equipping that small assembly for their global mission, energizing that community with nothing less than the life […]

Wait. Pray., Ascension Day – 2018

May 10, 2018

Today’s first reading and gospel form an unusual pair.  They both come from the two-volume work attributed to Luke the Evangelist.  One is from the end of the first volume, the book we call the Gospel according to Luke.  The other is from the start of the second volume, the book we call the Acts of the Apostles. […]

Corpses in the Corridor, Proper 19 (A) 2017

September 17, 2017

As you heard today’s gospel, did it make you uncomfortable, so that you shifted your weight from one foot to another, or perhaps gazed awkwardly into space?That parable Jesus tells does not pack a dose of sweet comfort but challenges us outrageously in a spot where we are most tender: the trouble we have with […]

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Christopher Sikkema


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