Final Sermon at Trinity Cathedral

Sermons and audio

There is reason to believe that the United States is about to enter into a period of increasing sectarian violence. In some places the shooting has already started. How are we as Christians, as Episcopalians, as members of Trinity Cathedral supposed to respond?

The lessons we used in this final sermon were the same as were used at my installation 6 years ago; the gospel was John 15:9-16.

You can read the notes that used in the extended entry below.

A note about future sermons. I was able to record this sermon off the iPad I used to preach from yesterday. My hope is that as I now preach in various pulpits week in and week out, I’ll be able to keep posting my sermons using this sort of workflow. Let me know if the audio is acceptable?

MP3 FileGrant, O merciful God that your Church, being gathered together in unity by your Holy Spirit may show forth your power among all peoples, to the glory of your name.

Gods and Generals – last major history of Civil War that I’ve read.

Resonances between the state of affairs in the US prior to the start of the Civil War and now.
New social economics model indicates the next decade will be marked by increasing sectarian violence in the US.

The Shooting has started

The burning of a “rogue” church in Ohio
The shooting of security guard at FRC

Families are being torn apart

Conversation with my sister about Chick-fil-A
Anglican Communion

Science vs. Religion

Anglican response…

Rhetoric has gotten away from us

Preachers get warned about this. We don’t always listen.
Politicians find it’s to their advantage now.
Internet just makes things more intense – to my GREAT DISAPPOINTMENT
Not getting better. Sorry.

What shall we do?

Jesus has called us his friends. All of us.
All of us. Even the ones who don’t like him.
Are we willing to be friends to people like he has been to us?
Even the people who don’t like us?
It’s hard. I know.
And people will mistrust you. You refuse to keep to the appointed boundaries.

Singing to the songs of God in the middle of the battle.

The community of God at the crossroads of the secular community.

Keep to the mission. Be brave. We were created for this task.

God will be with us.

The Author

Episcopal bishop, dad, astronomer, erstwhile dancer...


  1. Celeste says


    Yes, the audio is acceptable…in fact better than simply acceptable. I look forward to hearing more from RI. Now on to doing more than acceptable in hearing “each others voices.”

    Celeste CREDO & ECR

  2. Rev Mary Johnstone says

    Just listened to your stirring sermon. Right on! A clear mission for all Episcopalians to listen to each other, pray together, being peace to one another & our fractured world. Really looking forward to welcoming you to RI!! God bless you & family & enjoy your move! Audio was excellent. I listened to it on my iPhone.

  3. Avril says

    Bless you and thank you for your courage and insight into what is going on here and now. I agree that the times we’re in are heightened/precarious and to hear you preach specifically about it gives me much needed perspective to be more aware and outwardly loving in my interactions with ‘strangers’ and friends who have polarizing beliefs that disturb me.

  4. Bill Ghrist says

    Wow! What a powerful message, and one that I wish could be heard more widely. We really need it now. The story of your visit with your sister reminds me of how the events in the Diocese of Pittsburgh are a prime example of what dreadful things happen when people decide they just can’t live with those with whom they disagree. Well, we are about to embark on our next step to get ourselves back on keel, and I am hopeful that we will continue to “mess and muddle” ourselves back to health (although I wish you could have been the one to lighten our way through the muddle). May God’s grace follow you to Rhode Island.

  5. Ken Poulton says

    There is such a hopeful message here. We do have a clear choice and it is one that has nothing to do with Nov 6th… Vote for Jesus every day!

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