Although not yet a full-fledged minister, I’ve had the opportunity to preach now and then due to fortunate circumstance and the generosity and patience of my home congregations. My sermons have always been well received, but I have to wonder who is the real beneficiary — I’ve been amazed at how much I learn each time I sit down to compile thoughts others might not have already thought themselves. The word “sermon,” by the way, has its origins in the Latin roots for “conversation” (sermo) and “to link together” (serere). Good to keep in mind.


Finding the Center

Finding the Center July 2017     “What’s under a play? What holds it up? You might as well ask, what’s under me? On what am I built?” —John Patrick Shanley, preface to “Doubt”   So. What’s under you? On what are you built? In today’s reading, the playwright John… Read More

Shock and Awe

Shock and Awe First Parish of Sudbury Sunday, November 6, 2016   Do you remember “shock and awe?” I see some nodding heads. You may be thinking, yeah, Gulf War. And you’d be half right. There have been two Gulf Wars, and they were 12 years apart. So, a little… Read More

Who Invented Love?

Who Invented Love? Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield October 2, 2016     I have probably spent far too much time in my life trying to figure out the universe. I sometimes try to picture myself out in airless space, experiencing the complete absence of sound waves, a sound quieter… Read More

My Father’s Hat

My Father’s Hat A Father’s Day Service The First Church in Belmont June 19, 2016   After my dad died about seven years ago from heart failure, my mother gave me a few of his clothing items—some flannel shirts, a spring jacket that was way too big, and this hat. My… Read More

Love, Life, and All That Jazz

Love, Life, and All That Jazz Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield February 14, 2016   Opening Words … are from the poet, Langston Hughes. In 1926, when he was 24 years old, Hughes published his first book of poetry, The Weary Blues, which included an essay, “The Negro Artist and… Read More

Can We All Get Along?

Can We All Get Along? Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield January 24, 2015   Opening words: I’ve been in the storm so long, children Been in the storm so long I’ve been in the storm so long, children Gimme a little time to pray. (from an African American spiritual)   Sermon:… Read More

A Testament for Our Times

A Testament for Our Times Sunday, September 27, 2015 Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield, Mass.   Opening Words: Battle Hymn of the Self Republic   Mine eyes have seen the glory of the universe in a single flower For that would be the Buddhist in me. I have seen all… Read More

Love After

Love After Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield March 22, 2015   When I began writing this sermon, a talk about resurrection, we all had in fact been buried—not for three days, but for three months, under many feet of snow. Friday was the first day of spring. Next Sunday is… Read More

The Greatest Gift

The Greatest Gift An Epiphany Service Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church January 4, 2015   Reading: Not Just a Nice Story (John Shelby Spong) John Shelby Spong is a retired Episcopalian bishop living in New Jersey who travels the world advocating a liberal Christianity. He has written extensively about the Bible… Read More

What The Associated Press Stylebook Taught Me About Love

What The Associated Press Stylebook Taught Me about Love First Parish of Sudbury, Massachusetts November 30, 2014     Opening Words We know that racism wears many faces in today’s society, some of them subtle and some of them blatant. We know that whatever happened in Ferguson is but symptomatic… Read More