The Rev. Dr. Amy Richter is a priest who currently serves as an Episcopal Volunteer in Mission, working on the Galatians 6:2 (“Bear one another’s burdens”) project, focusing on theological education, and serving as a visiting academic at the University of KwaZula Natal in South Africa. She and her husband, Joseph Pagano, blog at www.amyandjoegotoafrica.com. Their most recent co-edited book is Common Prayer, reflections on Episcopal worship by Episcopal writers, poets, theologians, and musicians. Amy’s most recent book is a novel, Antimony, a thriller that combines mythology, biblical stories, and mystery.
Sermons and Bible Studies
[RCL] Jonah 3:1-5, 10; Psalm 62:6-14; 1 Corinthians 7:29-31; Mark 1:14-20 “Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ And immediately they left their nets and followed him.” That’s all we get in today’s Gospel lesson to describe how Jesus called his first disciples and how they responded. That’s […]
[RCL]: Exodus 1:8-2:10; Psalm 124; Romans 12:1-8; Matthew 16:13-20 Moses’ first response to the burning bush was curiosity: “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” By the end of his life, though, did Moses instead wonder at how appropriate this manifestation of God […]
[RCL]: Acts 7:55-60; Psalm 31:1-5, 15-16; 1 Peter 2:2-10; John 14:1-14 It all feels so up in the air. When have so many people, everywhere, felt so uncertain, had so many unanswered and unanswerable questions all at the same time? When have so many plans been upended, suspended? When have so many guidelines been provisional, […]
[RCL]: Haggai 1:15b-2:9; Psalm 145:1-5, 18-22 or Psalm 98; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17; Luke 20:27-38 People chase immortality in many ways. Some spend billions on research in search of the technology or genetics or pharmaceuticals or a whole host of things they hope will allow humans, someday, to defy death or radically extend our span […]
[RCL]: Isaiah 1:1, 10-20; Psalm 50:1-8, 23-24; Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16; Luke 12:32-40 By faith… by faith… by faith… These words pulse through today’s epistle like a heartbeat, lub-dub, lub-dub, lub-dub. (It also works in Greek, the language the letter was originally written in—a single, two-syllable word we translate “by faith.” It sounds like pist-ay). “By […]
[RCL]: Isaiah 49:1-7; Psalm 71:1-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18-31; John 12:20-36 Sometimes our eyes deceive us. We think we know what we’re looking at, but it turns out that reality is different than we thought, like our perceptions or expectations were off, there is more here than meets the eye. Sometimes, of course, we can’t see […]
Why start with this miracle? In John’s Gospel, the first of Jesus’ signs—what the other Gospels call “miracles”—was turning water into wine. Jesus’ first sign that inspired his disciples to believe in him was not healing a sick person, bringing someone back from the dead, forgiving sins, or exorcizing a demon. It was making gallons […]
Here they come: the Zebedee boys. In fact, you can see them coming. They’ve been shopping at Men’s Wearhouse, and they like how they look. They flash whitened smiles, they’ve got just enough grey around the temples to look experienced but not tired; enough tan to look sporty, not like they have to earn a […]
How do we know what is enough? To any normal member of his kingdom, King David would have looked like a man with enough. And yet, King David was not content. He wanted things that were not his to have. He wanted Bathsheba, although she was married to someone else. He wanted the appearance of […]
Ever wondered, even for a moment, what it would be like to be royalty? Ever indulged in a daydream that you’re really the child of a king or a queen? Did you watch even a few minutes, maybe even just the sermon, of the recent royal wedding and wonder what it would be like to […]
Jesus has such a heart for his church. In this parable and its explanation, he’s not only addressing his first disciples but, as with all scripture, he’s addressing us too. This parable could be a way to get us to do a little soil sampling of our hearts, a little analysis to see what kind […]
Dr. Margee Kerr is a sociologist who studies fear. She and other experts who write about how to keep New Year’s resolutions say that the secret to keeping resolutions is not to follow most people’s usual approach. Most people’s usual approach is to think about how we’re deficient, inadequate, unsuccessful, and try really, really hard […]
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