Posts

Showing posts from January, 2018

Epiphany 5B: Walking the Way of the Empty-handed Fishermen

A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Deuteronomy 18:15-20; Psalm 111; 1 Corinthians 8:1-13; Mark 1:21-28 The Reverend Tyler B. Doherty, Priest-in-Charge Walking the Way of the Empty-handed Fishermen One of difficulties of hearing the gospel chopped up into little bits each week is that it’s pretty easy to lose a sense of the overall arc of the narrative, God’s story in which we find ourselves storied . We miss the forest for the trees, you might say. So let’s just take a moment to look back at where we’ve come from and forward to where we are going in Mark’s narrative to see what that can illuminate what Mark wants us to see about Jesus and how to apply that in our life together. Remember, last week we heard the calling of the disciples—the invitation, as real and urgent now as it was then—to drop our nets, stop fiddling with our bilge pumps, and follow after Jesus empty-handed, placing our trust not in things that pass away and inevitably disappoint, but in God and God al…

Evensong Meditation--Ephphantha--Be Opened or Openness Opening

A Meditation Delivered at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Psalm 103; Gal. 2:1-10; Mark 7: 31-37 The Reverend Tyler Doherty, Priest-in-Charge Ephphatha—Be Opened It’s interesting that on an evening when are to bless and dedicate a new piano for the Cathedral, our gospel features a, “deaf man who had an impediment in his speech.” Whether we are talking about an actual deaf man is open question—many scholars have noted that the Greek word κωφός originally meant blunt, or dull and is used in the Old Testament (in places like Isaiah and Micah) to refer to gentiles who are not open to the words of the prophets. Mark may be setting before us a physical healing, but there are more profound, spiritual resonances at work here as well with clear implications for the life of discipleship and prayer. The man thrust before Jesus is somehow closed off to the new song God has been singing in Christ from the foundation of the world. He can’t hear the music. Jesus pulls him aside, spits, places his finger…

Epiphany 3B--“For God alone my soul in silence waits…”: Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places

A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Epiphany 3B: Jonah 3:1-5, 10; Psalm 62:6-14; 1 Corinthians 7:29-31;; Mark 1:14-20 The Reverend Tyler B. Doherty, Priest-in-Charge
“For God alone my soul in silence waits…”: Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places             Today’s Gospel got me thinking about the professional golfer David Duval, whom some of you might remember. In 2001, having reached number one in the world rankings, Duval won the British Open—one of golf’s four major championships and the oldest professional major. Duval seemingly had it all. Stoic behind his ever-present blade sunglasses, he played with an almost machine-like precision and without fear. The funny thing, however, is that when Duval woke up the next morning expecting to feel differently, he didn’t. He was the same old David. He had reached the pinnacle of his profession, and yet it didn’t change anything and a deep or fundamental level. The ache was still there. The gnawing sense of lack. Not too l…

Epiphany 2B: To What Are You Joined? Eli, the Fig tree, & the Bridal Chamber of the Heart

A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Samuel 3:1-10 (11-20); Psalm 139:1-5, 12-17; 1 Corinthians 6:12-20; John 1:43-51 The Reverend Tyler B. Doherty, Priest-in-Charge
To What Are You Joined? Eli, the Fig tree, & the Bridal Chamber of the Heart
It’s hard to hear our passage from Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians and not just dismiss it as more prudish Church-talk about what people do between the sheets. Haven’t we heard enough of the Church opining in righteous indignation on the bedroom habits of consenting adults? Perhaps. But, that’s not really what Paul is talking about. Sure, on the surface he’s talking about “fornication with prostitutes,” but the spiritual issue he is raising goes far deeper. The question that St. Paul is putting to the Corinthians, and to us, is this—“To what are you joined?” If it’s true (and I think it is) that we come to resemble that which we worship, then Paul’s question is really about where we place our attention, to what we devote o…

Baptism of Our Lord--Letting it Rip

A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Baptism of Our Lord, Year B: Genesis 1:1-5; Psalm 29; Acts 19:1-7; Mark 1:4-11 The Reverend Tyler B. Doherty, Priest-in-Charge
One of the things that always amazes me about the Gospel according to Mark is how forcefully we are thrust right into the middle of the action without a moment’s notice. Matthew’s got his genealogy and flight into Egypt, Luke his songs, canticles, annunciation, and visitation, John his cosmically poetic, philosophical meditation on the logos, but Mark just starts right in—we are plopped into the wilderness with old camel-haired, bug-munching John the Baptist.             Some folks like to suggest that Mark is somehow unartful, primitive, and not much of a story-teller. The immediacy of the opening is read as crude, and ham-fisted, as if Mark lacked the sophistication to come up with a better lead-in (what I call the “dark and stormy night” school of Markan interpretation). But this way approaching the opening…

Epiphany--Lab Geeks of Luminosity and the Transmission of the Light

A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark Epiphany: Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-7,10-14; Ephesians 3:1-12; Matthew 2:1-12 The Reverend Tyler B. Doherty, Priest-in-Charge The Feast of the Epiphany is part of a densely packed series of seasons and feasts whose overall shape is easy to forget. Let me take a moment, like they do on t.v., to conduct a “previously on…” thumbnail sketch of the story thus far, and then tease out the meaning of the Epiphany for us here and now. We might consider the entire sweep of the great season from Advent to Epiphany as a kind of pageant or play. The play begins with Advent when we celebrate the union of the Eternal Word of God with human nature in the womb of the Virgin Mary and ponder in our hearts what it might be like through our consent to God’s presence and action to give birth to Christ in the our hearts—to become theotokos—“god-bearers.” In the second act we celebrate Christmas—there is an explosion of light in which the Eternal Word of God …