Sermons

2015

We invite you to read or listen to past sermons from the First Congregational Church of Southington.

2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011

March 22, 2015: The Rev. Linda Fernandes-Bailey

In this week’s scripture (Jeremiah 31:27-34) God says “I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. I will be their God and they will be my people.” What does it mean to have our hearts broken open and God’s dream as our own dream? Compassion, kindness, justice, love, peace, forgiveness, equality: these are the words of our faith, but are they written on our hearts?

Hearts Broken Open  (audio)

March 15, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

John 3:14-21 “When you look at the cross, it matters what you see. There, lifted up before us, is the deadly result of a world broken away from God. When we look at Jesus on the cross, we are seeing God’s judgement, on others and on ourselves. But as we look fully into the face of this awful judgement, God dares us to believe that judgement can be overcome by grace.”

Into the Darkness (pdf) (audio)

March 8, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

John 2:13-22 tells the story of Jesus’ first trip to the temple. He proceeds to drive out the merchants who are making the temple a marketplace, teaching us what our real ministry should be. “When your children run to tell you what they learned in church school…when we deliver food to Southington Community Services…when a Stephen Minister walks alongside a woman who just lost her husband of 50 years…when GLBTQ youth feel comfortable walking through these doors knowing that they will find people here to love them…That is our ministry.”

Into the Temple (pdf) (audio)

March 1, 2015: The Rev. Dawn M. Karlson

In this week’s scripture (Mark 8:31-38), Jesus challenges his followers to “take up their cross” and follow him. When we follow Jesus into places of suffering, our own and others’, we walk into opportunities to meet God in the hearts and stories of others. We walk into opportunities to be changed by our suffering, and become new in some small or large way.

Suffering: Seeing It and Moving Through It (audio)

February 22, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

To be “called” is to be driven to places you never expected you would end up, and in today’s scripture (Mark 1:9-15), Jesus is called to the wilderness where he encounters temptations and “wild beasts.” Whatever wilderness you face, whatever “wild beasts” accompany you on your journey, there is hope.

Into the Wilderness (pdf) (audio)

February 8, 2015: The Rev. Linda Fernandes-Bailey

Today’s scripture (Mark 1:29-39) says, “In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed.” This line is in between Jesus healing and proclaiming the good news. Is our ministry grounded in prayer? What is prayer anyway, and how shall we do it? How do we get comfortable with praying?

A Deserted Place to Pray (pdf)

February 1, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

In today’s scripture (Mark 1:21-28), Jesus has been set loose in the world and nothing will ever be the same. The authority he brings is different. No matter what demons we face, Jesus wants to do something with us; even us, rational 21st-Century Christians. God still finds ways to call us, to help us find the place where we belong.

What Will Jesus Do with You? (pdf) (audio)

January 25, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

“Jesus does not call a committee when he walks by the shore of the Sea of Galilee—he calls followers. He does not say to Simon, Andrew, James, and John let’s go sit down and discuss what we are going to do next and see if you want to come along. Jesus doesn’t say, “Let’s think about this thing for a while.” Jesus says to these fishermen, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people!” And immediately they followed him.” Will we? Will you?

Immediately  (pdf) (audio)

January 11, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

“…an authentic community of imperfect people, drawn together by the chaos that is around us in this world; connected to the living God sweeping over the darkness and void of the world we read about in the newspaper every day; a community that gives us courage and love, that leads us to act with compassion in the world…” It starts here.

Why Did Jesus Have to Be Baptized? (pdf) (audio)

January 4, 2015: The Rev. Dr. Ronald B. Brown

“We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own” from Bishop Kenneth Untener’s prayer, “We Are Prophets of a Future Not Our Own” quoted in Pastor Ron’s sermon for Epiphany Sunday, “The Road We Are On”

The Road We Are On (pdf) (audio)

Did you receive your Star Gift this year?

A Star Gift is a paper star with a special word on it, that guides us through our year. It may… If you would like to participate in this, please email the church office (or call us at 860-628-6958) and tell us if you’d like your word to be emailed back to you, or provide your address to have it sent via the postal service.