On saying “Yes”

4th Sunday of Advent, December 20 2015 Micah 5.2-5a; Luke 1.46b-55; Hebrews 10.5-10; Luke 1.39-45 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland I grew up in Dublin in the 1950s. The Catholic Ireland of those days was saturated with devotion to Mary the mother of Jesus. On the hour every hour we would stand up from…

A world that knows not love

December 16 2015 Carrie Ballenger Smith is a pianist, in between serving as pastor of the English-speaking congregation in the Church of the Redeemer in the Old City. Jonas Schaefer is a guitarist, in between working at the Ecumenical Accompaniment office in Jerusalem. My wife Vivien is a soprano soloist, in between being my wife…

Are you green and blossoming?

3rd Sunday of Advent, December 13 2015 Isaiah 12.2-6; Philippians 4.4-7; Luke 3.7-18 Rev Loren McGrail, United Church of Christ/National YWCA of Palestine When crowds of people came out for baptism because it was the popular thing to do, John exploded: “Brood of snakes! What do you think you’re doing slithering down here to the…

Like a refiner’s fire

2nd Sunday of Advent, December 6 2015 Malachi 3.1-4; Luke 1.68-79; Philippians 1.3-11; Luke 3.1-6 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland In May this year in St Andrew’s Scots Memorial, David Loden’s choir sang Handel’s Messiah – not in English or even in German, but in Hebrew. It was a subtle form of evangelism. They…

Why are we here?

St Andrew’s Day, November 30 2015 Isaiah 55, Psalm 9.7-11, John 12.20-36 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland Barbara Trapido’s first novel, published in 1982, was called Brother of the More Famous Jack, a book that redefined the coming-of-age novel.[1] My next St Andrew’s Day sermon will be called Brother of the More Famous Peter.…

Why are we here?

St Andrew’s Day sermon, November 30 2015 Isaiah 55, Psalm 9.7-11, John 12.20-36 St Andrew’s Scots Memorial Church, Jerusalem Barbara Trapido’s first novel, published in 1982, was called Brother of the More Famous Jack, a book that redefined the coming-of-age novel.[1] My next St Andrew’s Day sermon will be called Brother of the More Famous…

Seek me and live

Advent Sunday, November 29 2015 Jeremiah 33.14-16; Psalm 25.1-10; 1 Thessalonians 3.9-13; Luke 21.20-33 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland At the height of the troubles in Northern Ireland, my friend the late English Dominican Herbert McCabe used to say that the city that most resembled Jerusalem at the time of Jesus was Belfast. These…

The God we throw away

Christ the King, November 22 2015 2 Samuel 23.1-7; Psalm 132.1-18; Revelation 1.4b-8; John 18.33-37 Chauncey Handy, Presbyterian Church (USA) Before I begin my sermon, I think a bit of an introduction is in order. My name is Chauncey Handy, I’m a masters degree student at the Hebrew University and I’m a certified candidate for…

Wars and rumours of wars

25th Sunday after Pentecost, November 15 2015 1 Samuel 1.4-20; Psalm 16; Hebrews 10.11-25; Mark 13.1-8 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland Last Sunday, I preached on war and remembrance of war. Perhaps I should have waited a week. This was not an easy sermon for me to write, and it will not be an…

The comradeship of a true cause

Remembrance Sunday, November 8 2015 Deuteronomy 4.9-14; Psalm 127; Hebrews 9.24-28; John 15.9-17 Rev Páraic Réamonn, Church of Scotland On the morning of October 31 1917, British infantry from 20 Corps attacked the town of Beersheba from the south-west. Soon after mid-day they captured the main defences. But these were some distance from the town…