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“No Longer Suffocated by Stuff”

The Rev. Wilbert S. Miller
Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity-Manhattan
“No Longer Suffocated by Stuff”
July 31, 2016 (Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost)
(Ecclesiastes 1: 2, 12-14; 2: 18-23; Colossians 3: 1-11; Luke 12: 13-21)

I once presided at a wedding where the bridesmaids were models from one of the world’s premiere modeling agencies and the ushers included a congressman, a former professional basketball player, and the CEO of an international company.  The reception was held at an exclusive country club with a string quartet, roving musicians, and a rhythm and blues group you all know.

The groom’s childhood friend, a Presbyterian minister, preached at this exquisite affair.  I remember his words: “This wedding is a fairy tale straight out of Camelot: gorgeous women, influential power-brokers, and topnotch musicians.”  Precisely at that point, sensing a profound disparity between Presbyterian and Lutheran clergy, I gagged.  And then the good reverend redeemed himself; he looked straight into the couple’s eyes and said, “But money can’t buy you love.” (more…)

This Week at Holy Trinity

This Week at Holy Trinity

WORSHIP

Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost – July 31, 2016
Enjoy the cool breezes (of 75 degrees) gathered around the gifts of Word and Sacrament at Mass at 11:00 am. Pastor Wilbert Miller preaches and presides.

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“Audacious Prayer”

The Rev. Wilbert S. Miller
Sermon for July 24, 2016 (Tenth Sunday after Pentecost)
Genesis 18: 20-32; Luke 11: 1-13
“Audacious Prayer”

Forty years ago, I instantly changed how I pray.   A friend of mine told me about one of his seminary classes taught by Robert Jensen, one of our fine Lutheran theologians. At least how I understood it, Dr.  Jenson said that when we pray, rather than hemming and hawing, we should ask God for exactly what we want.  I have always interpreted Dr. Jenson’s words this way: no prayer to God is too audacious.  Telling God exactly what’s on our mind was such a startling notion that I still wonder whether Dr. Jenson really advocated this manner of prayer. (more…)

“Mary and Martha, Lollygaggers and Busy Bodies Alike”

The Rev. Wilbert S. Miller
The Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity-Manhattan
Sunday, July 17, 2016 (Ninth Sunday After Pentecost)
“Mary and Martha, Lollygaggers and Busy Bodies Alike” (Luke 10: 38-42)

For the life of me, I can never quite remember which sister is Martha and which is Mary.  I must refresh my memory every time this morning’s gospel reading appears to see who sits at Jesus’ feet all google-eyed and who grumpily labors away in the sweltering kitchen.

Once I recall who Mary and Martha are, I catch myself wondering which sister I am.  Am I the one who loves sitting in the quiet of this sanctuary, soaking in God’s love, or am I the busy-body who measures her self-worth by how much work she does, albeit for a very good cause? (more…)