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Category "Theology"

Lay Preaching

This blog section summarises my commitment in lay preaching and provides access to my sermons and meditations, and to preaching resources.

For many years now, I have been invited once in a while as a lay and relief preacher:  by my own home church in Frankfurt/Main, Germany, by local congregations and overseas, and now here in Australia by local congregations.  Some of my more recent sermons can be found in this Blog section.

If you would like to invite me as well, feel free to do so and contact me via Email <info /at/ grweb.org>. [Read more »]

Sermon ~ “Come!”

Matthew 14:22-33
Uniting Church of Australia,
Mount Barker SA

13 August 2017

1.

Lake Galilee, looking towards Bashan, Israel. Coloured litho.

I was a young lad, when it all happened. Nobody took much notice of me, but I was around and could hear and see. My uncles and older brothers were fishermen, and they often took me along as a helper.

Amongst these strong men, I did not need much space in the fishing boat, so skinny was I then. I lived with my family near the lake; we called it כנרת ים, Jam Kinneret, or Lake Galilee. It is a remarkable lake, full of fish, good water, almost like a paradise with nice beaches, and when you look at it from the mountains, it seems to be endless. [Read more »]

Sermon ~ “freely you have received, freely give”

Matthew 9:35-10:8, (9-23)
Geranium Uniting Church SA
18 June 2017

1.

When I first visited Australia — in 1992 — I was impressed by your hospitality. This is still true today: A barbecue at the house of my sister in law:  whenever I drop in there, sometimes unannounced and with visitors to show them true-blue Aussie life, there’ll be a cup of tea and, if possible, something to eat. For me, coming from crowded Germany where many people live in small apartments, a meal in the backyard is just something special. Even more so as it offers the opportunity to sit and talk and get to know each other.

There is something fascinating having people visiting you, even strangers from other places: All of a sudden, the world is coming to you, and you can sit on your porch and learn something new. It is like an unexpected gift that the visitors leave behind. [Read more »]

Meditation ~ Der Tag, den der Herr gemacht hat

Psalm 118,24
EKD Prädikantenkurs 2017
13.5.2017

Dies ist der Tag, den der Herr macht — lasst uns freuen und fröhlich an ihm sein. (Luther-Übersetzung).

Danket, danket dem Herrn, denn er ist freundliche und seine Güte währet ewiglich.  [Read more »]

Andacht ~ “Ich werde ihr Gott sein …”

Ex 20,1-17 / Dtn 5,6–21
EKD Prädikantenkurs 2017
23.3.2017

Sandsteintafeln Zehn Gebote

Sandsteintafeln Zehn Gebote

 

In Stein gemeisselt — fast für die Ewigkeit, nicht zu übersehen, nie zu vergessen — so brachte Mose den Dekalog Gottes mit ihm vom Berg in die Ebene.  Menschen auf der Flucht, aus dem übermächtigen Ägypten in das Niemandsland der Wüsten des Sinai. [Read more »]

Sermon ~ Waiting … or “I have a Dream”

Matthew 11:2-11
Geranium Uniting Church SA
11 December 2016

Our Bible text this morning is the well-known story about John the Baptist in prison, as recounted by Matthew the Evangelist:

When he heard what the Messiah was doing,
he sent word to Jesus by his disciples and asked him,
Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?” (Mt 11,2-3) [Read more »]

Sermon ~ Trust not power, but compassion

Luke 7, 11-17
Geranium Uniting Church SA
5 June 2016

Out of the blue I received a call from the worship service coordinator for the tiny Mallee town Uniting Church.  Would I be able to preach rather sooner than later, as I she found my name on a list of UCA relief preachers willing to preach in remote communities.  For me, this was a most fascinating occasion:  For the first time I had the opportunity to meet Australian Christians outside of a major city like Adelaide.  And I was invited to spend the night with a local farming family, thus learning more about their way of life.

A typical characteristics of the place was the railway crossing:  It warns you of oncoming trains, and if don’t stop you may be fined by the police.  Only:  As in so many other places around Australia, no train will ever come again — the rail link was closed down sometime last year.  People are talking about a bike track!  It sounds funny — but seems to be a rather sad occurrence of the loss of social and economic infrastructure in remote Australia and by that the looming  breakdown of the communities.

This was the context for the sermon — and I was very grateful for the opportunity. [Read more »]

Sermons preached & Meditations (Listing)

This section of my Blog provides an  overview listing of some of the sermons preached in the past, and meditations, organised by Bible text. All sermons were written for a specific context.

Fellow lay preachers, feel free to use the ideas.  The attached pdf file contains the complete service draft.  I am grateful to my proof reader for language corrections — errors and typos are mine. [Read more »]

Sermon ~ Pentecost: The Spirit of Truth

John 13,36 and 14,1-19
Glengowrie Uniting Church
15 May 2016 (Pentecost Sunday)

Sermon at Pentecost about Jesus’ promise of the coming of the Paraclete.

[Read more »]

The Opposite of Love …

I have not been online here for a long time — and there are many reasons of which I may tell you one day.

Tonight I watched the last few minutes of an interesting documentary on Australias NITV (the National Indigenous Television), “Standing on Sacred Ground“.  In this four-part documentary series, native people share ecological wisdom and spiritual reverence while battling a utilitarian view of land in the form of government megaprojects, consumer culture, and resource extraction as well as competing religions and climate change.1 ] In the last couple of minutes, the author Barry Lopez is being interviewed:

Most of the time when you ask people, “What is the opposite of love?”, they will say hate. But the opposite of love is indifference. People are indifferent to the Earth. What we have in front of us in an enterprise to repair indifference on a vast scale and turn it into a loving relationship.2 ]

This is a remarkable statement.Indeed, you can’t really “hate” nature, rather than another person or a natural feature.  But by being indifferent to either of them, human beings or nature, I don’t care — in essence, I don’t love.

As a migrant I have left my turf in Germany to live in Australia, but here having worked with Aboriginal people I have had the chance to see them “come back” – to their country.

I have to get the chance to watch the full documentary!

Footnotes

  1. Synopses [top]
  2. Transcript, p30 (pdf). [top]