Sermons

Church Year Seasons

The Christian Year calendar is our guide for worship and Christian faith formation. The beginning of the Christian year is the season of Advent, approximately four weeks before Christmas Day, and continues with special days and seasons following the life of Christ and the mission of the church.

There are two major cycles in the Christian Year. One is the Advent-Christmas-Epiphany cycle that is focused upon Christmas. The other is the Lent-Easter-Pentecost cycle that has Easter as its focus. The other periods in the year are referred to as “ordinary time.” This is not because they are “ordinary” days. Ordinary is taken from the word for “ordinal” numbers. The Sundays during this time are designated by the “first,” “second,” “third,” Sunday after Pentecost, for example. Therefore, they are designated “ordinary” time because of using ordinal numbers to mark them.

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Advent

From the Latin word, adventus, Advent means “arrival” or “coming” and marks the coming of Jesus as human being into the world. Including the four Sundays prior to Christmas day, this season is used as a time of preparing for the coming of the Christ child. Advent marks the beginning of the church year and is the first season in the Christian calendar. While our calendar begins with January 1, the church year begins with Advent.

 

Christmas

The season of Christmas is actually a period of twelve days which begins on Christmas Day and continues through January 5. We typically think of the season of Christmas as beginning after Thanksgiving and concluding on December 25. However, for the Church, December 25 is the culmination of the waiting, and marks the beginning of Christmas.

 

Epiphany

The Day of Epiphany follows the twelve days of Christmas. Epiphany, as a day and season of celebration, has been around as long as the celebration of Christmas. Epiphanies are those instances where gods reveal themselves, and make themselves known to humanity. Our January 6 celebration, as Christians, emphasizes the epiphany, or manifestation of God, and represents the revelation of God to the world in Jesus Christ.

 

Lent

Lent is a season of prayer, penance and self-discipline, beginning on the Wednesday of the seventh week before Easter. The season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday. Ash Wednesday is forty days prior to Easter, not counting Sundays. The sixth Sunday in lent is Palm Sunday, which begins Holy Week. Holy Week includes Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and officially ends on Holy Saturday. Easter Sunday then begins the season of Easter which lasts for seven weeks.

Easter

Easter Day commemorates the day of resurrection of Jesus following the crucifixion. Easter is more than a day of celebration in the Christian calendar; it includes a period of seven weeks, and is known as The Great Fifty Days. The full period of Easter continues from Easter Sunday to the day of Pentecost.

Pentecost

The day of Pentecost is the Sunday following the end of the fifty days of Easter. The Day of Pentecost commemorates the coming of the Holy Spirit to the followers of Jesus in the immediate days after the ascension of Jesus.

Sermons from the Season After Pentecost

June 13, 2021
The Third Sunday after Pentecost

In Heaven: Where’s That? — Sermon by Matt Marston
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June 6, 2021
The Second Sunday after Pentecost

Calling God “Father” — Sermon by Matt Marston
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May 30, 2021
Trinity Sunday

God’s Self-giving Glory — Sermon by Matt Marston
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May 23, 2021
Day of Pentecost

New Possibilities — Not Just a Good Time — Sermon by Matt Marston
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Sermons from Easter

May 23, 2021
Day of Pentecost

New Possibilities — Not Just a Good Time — Sermon by Matt Marston
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May 16, 2021
Ascension Sunday
Youth Sunday

The Gift of Knowledge — Sermon by Jon Millians
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May 9, 2021
The Sixth Sunday of Easter

Loving as God Loves — Sermon by Matt Marston
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May 2, 2021
Children’s Sunday

Who Turned on the Lights? — Sermon by Janet Cleland
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April 25, 2021
The Fourth Sunday of Easter

Peacefully a Sheep — Sermon by Matt Marston
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April 18, 2021
The Third Sunday of Easter

Raised for Repentance — Sermon by Matt Marston
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April 11, 2021
The Second Sunday of Easter

Risen with Wounds? — Sermon by Matt Marston
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April 4, 2021
Easter

Afraid of Good News — Sermon by Matt Marston
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Sermons from Lent

The Sixth Sunday in Lent
March 28, 2021

Forgiveness is Never Free — Sermon by Matt Marston

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The Fourth Sunday in Lent
March 14, 2021

Children of Wrath? — Sermon by Matt Marston

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The Third Sunday in Lent
March 7, 2021

The Wisdom of the Cross — Sermon by Matt Marston

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The First Sunday in Lent
February 21, 2021

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea — Sermon by Matt Marston

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Sermons from Epiphany

February 14, 2021
Transfiguration Sunday 

Overwhelming Glory — Sermon by Matt Marston
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February 7, 2021
The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

The Gospel of God — Sermon by Matt Marston
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January 31, 2021

The Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany

Jesus and an Unclean Spirit — Sermon by Matt Marston
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January 24, 2021

The Third Sunday after the Epiphany

Is Repentance Good News? — Sermon by Matt Marston
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January 17, 2021

The Second Sunday after the Epiphany

Seeing Greater Things — Sermon by Matt Marston
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The First Sunday after the Epiphany

Approving This Message — Sermon by Matt Marston
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Sermons from Christmas

January 3, 2021

The Second Sunday of Christmas

An Open Orthodoxy — Sermon by Matt Marston
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December 27, 2020

The First Sunday of Christmas

A Different Pattern — Sermon by Matt Marston
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Sermons from Advent 2020

The Third Sunday of Advent
December 13, 2020

The Soil of Rejoicing  — Sermon by Matt Marston
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The Second Sunday of Advent
December 6, 2020

Behold Your God  — Sermon by Matt Marston
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The First Sunday of Advent
November 29, 2020

Noticing Our Rags  — Sermon by Matt Marston
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