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The Passionate Jesus

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Topic Features About Christmas

The Rev. Thomas Are, Jr.

Thomas Are, Jr. - Celebrating Christmas with Mark

Mark 1:9-13

1st Sunday of Advent - Special

December 02, 2018

The Rev. Thomas Are, Jr. (PCUSA)


When our kids were younger, Christmas meant a road trip. We would rotate among my wife's siblings. First to brother Bob's house. Then brother Dave's house. Then sister Laura. Finally, we would host... and then repeat the rotation. When we moved from the east coast to Kansas City, our trips got longer. It would be one of those trips that was a day and a half in the car, for a day a half with family, then another day and a half in the to get home. I would imagine that our time with family is much like your time with family. We exchanged gifts. We drew names for gifts exchange... seems most years I would draw uncle Dave's name, which is an envied choice. He's impossible to shop for, but he is the most gracious of all of us. No matter what you would give him, he will say it's perfect. You could give him salt and pepper shakers that look like nuns playing bongos and he would say, "That's perfect!" We would have a family meal together, usually turkey... you should have been there the year that everyone got tossed from the kitchen - there were seven or eight in there - and all of them experts in gravy. When you have that many gravy experts, you can stack them all end to end, and they still will not reach a conclusion on just how thick gravy needs to be.

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The Rev. Susan Sparks

Susan Sparks: Sun Mo Manger

Luke 2:1-20

Christmas Eve

December 24, 2017

The Rev. Susan Sparks (ABCUSA)


"There's no room here, or at the Holiday Inn, the Days Inn, or the C'mon Inn," the desk clerk said, shaking his head. "The Shriners have a gathering downtown, the Mary Kay convention is at the Coliseum, and there's a quilt show at the Marriott."

This was not welcome news. It was a cold, autumn night in Bismarck, N.D. My husband Toby and I had just finished a four-hundred-mile motorcycle ride from Wisconsin across Minnesota into North Dakota. "Please ... really ... we'll take anything," I said, starting to worry. "There is NO room here," he said with an impatient tone in his voice. "The best you can do is ride up to Fort Mandan and try the Sunset Motel." "But that's thirty miles!" I said. "Yup," he said, "and you'd better hurry. Because they're gonna fill up, too."

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Other Recent Content About Christmas

The Rev. Dr. Dwight A. Moody Transcript

December 25, 2016

Dwight Moody: This Is My Story

The Rev. Dr. Dwight Moody (CBF)

The whole glorious story of Jesus' nativity is our story, says Dwight Moody. We sing about it, role play in pageants, and it's a deep part of our lives. But it's easy to lose the story in the midst of the cultural celebration, so it's vital for believers to keep their focus on Jesus in the midst of it all.
The Very Rev. Dr. Christoph Keller III Transcript

December 18, 2016

Christoph Keller: Nothing to Dread

The Rev. Dr. Christoph Keller, III (TEC)

In his sermon for the 4th Sunday of Advent, Dr. Chris Keller shares that the prophet Isaiah’s pronouncements are realized in Matthew’s gospel: 700 years before the fact, Isaiah had predicted Christmas. And Christmas speaks to a whole world’s anxiety.
The Rev. Dr. Dwight A. Moody Transcript

December 27, 2015

The Prepositions of Praise

The Rev. Dr. Dwight Moody (CBF)

We have a singing faith. The Rev. Dr. Dwight Moody unpacks Colossians 3:16, which encourages us to sign psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs TO God, ABOUT Christ, FOR each other.
The Rev. Pendleton Peery Transcript

December 21, 2014

The Reality of Christmas

The Rev. Pendleton Peery (PCUSA)

As Advent draws to a close and we await the coming of Jesus, the Rev. Pen Peery explores the beautiful story of Mary's response to the angel Gabriel in Luke 1, and encourages us to let go of the need to prove or even comprehend the story.
The Rev. Maxwell Grant Transcript

December 22, 2013

Expecting Christmas

The Rev. Maxwell Grant (UCC)

Christmas may be a time of tremendous, and exhausting, expectations, and yet in his sermon for the 4th Sunday of Advent, the Rev. Max Grant says the season of Advent seems full of counter-cultural potential, because these weeks help us imagine a different way of preparing for the birth of Jesus, one that can't be rushed or shoe-horned in between trips to the mall. We can see the world with new eyes, as Joseph did.
The Rev. David Lewicki Transcript

January 01, 2012

Joy Comes in the Evening

The Rev. David Lewicki (PCUSA)

The story of Anna and Simeon greeting the infant Jesus in the temple gives us insights on joy. And whether we are young or aged, we have much to learn from each other about the joy of God.
The Rev. Dr. John Philip Newell Transcript

December 25, 2011

Look to the Child

The Rev. Dr. John Philip Newell (other)

On this Christmas Day, the Rev. Dr. John Philip Newell offers a powerful message of hope as we look to the Child of Peace, as did the shepherds and the Magi, so that we in turn can help bring peace to this world.
Bishop Kenneth Carter Transcript

December 18, 2011

Call and Response

Bishop Kenneth Carter (UMC)

On this final Sunday in Advent, the Rev. Dr. Ken Carter examines the important role that Mary, the mother of Jesus, plays in the story of our faith, and encourages us to listen for God's call to do extraordinary things.