Ecclesiastical and political pragmatism, with a beat
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
"Why I Love My Bishop": Sermon for 14 Pentecost
The first time I preached at St. John's, five years ago last weekend, I talked about a Pittsburgh man who had given away most of his fortune and decided it was wrong for him to keep his spare kidney as well -- a cautionary tale, perhaps, for a community being asked to entrust itself to a new pastor (and vice versa). But when our Bishop, J. Jon Bruno, decided that St. John's and I were right for each other, I obeyed cheerfully. A few years earlier, when I felt I'd done nothing right and had nothing left to give, he promised that he knew better. His graciousness was a lifesaver and a life teacher. Often we learn more from such moments than the happier ones. Proclaiming a ministry of civility, community, generosity, moderation, and peace is considerably easier when we have experienced (and promoted) the opposite. My Sunday sermon is here.