Archive for the ‘Advent/Christmas/Epiphany’ Category

Christmas Sermon   1 comment

Church of the Nativity

Above:  Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem, Palestine, Between 1898 and 1946

Image Source = Library of Congress

(http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/mpc2004006372/PP/)

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-matpc-06295

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Luke 2, 10-11

“Prepare thy timber without in the filed and here build thy house.”  The Lord prepared the world for Christ’s coming.

1.  His birth in Bethlehem.  The angels sing for joy at his coming.  Shepherds visit him.  Let us go with them.

Study him

(1) Condecension.  Became poor for our sakes.  From throne to manger.

(2)  Omnipotent arm, omniscient head, shoulders to bear the government of worlds, face to shed tears of light & sympathy, tongue to speak as never man spake, on his words men will hang their all, hands to cool the fevered brow and be pierced at last, heart to yearn over us & break at last in pity.  That form will carry our sorrows.

2.  “Fear not,” ’tis a message or love and tenderness; all is well.  For his sake God will hear the cries of sinful man.  “For a Saviour  is born.”  Just what we need.  Without him all would be despair.  “Christ the Lord,” “The mighty God.”

3.  “Bring x joy.”  The world has longed for a Saviour; now he is here.  Joy to sin-sick, helpless souls of men.

Brings institutions of Christianity for the bodies and souls of men, a home in heaven at last for all who believe him.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

Advent Renewal   Leave a comment

Snapshot_20121202

Above:  The Author on December 2, 2012

The cycle turns

from the Season after Pentecost

to Advent again;

Christ is King,

the announcement of the end of the old order

makes room for

the announcement of the new order.

Soon (liturgically),

a child will be born defenseless

into a dangerous world,

and, today,

I recall that perfidy must never

extinguish innocence and love.

The church year begins again

in apprehension and hope

and in the shadow of Calvary and an empty tomb–

again, apprehension and hope.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 3, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARUTHAS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF MAYPHERKAT AND MISSIONARY TO PERSIA

THE FEAST OF SAINT BERNARD OF PARMA, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF SAINT FRANCIS XAVIER, ROMAN CATHOLIC MISSIONARY IN ASIA

THE FEAST OF JOHN OWEN SMITH, UNITED METHODIST BISHOP IN GEORGIA

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Posted December 3, 2012 by neatnik2009 in Advent/Christmas/Epiphany, Kenneth Randolph Taylor 2012

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Christmas is Here   Leave a comment

Above:  A Nativity Play

Image Source = First Presbyterian Church, Edmond, Oklahoma

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Childrens_Nativity_Play_2007.jpg)

At a Christmas pageant,

Young girls playing angels

Surround boys playing shepherds.

The narrator says of the shepherds,

“They were terrified.”

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Adorable–not terrifying–angels,

Christmas carols,

Episcopal pomp and circumstance,

A plethora of incense–

Christmas is here.

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Visiting in Americus,

Singing with a church choir not my own,

Attending a church I have come to like

Yet which is distant from my home–

Feeling comfortable there–

Christmas is here.

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For all the darkness,

Fears, and

Uncertainties

Of our lives,

We have reasons to rejoice–

God is with us–

Christmas is here.

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For all our pain and sorrow,

We have reasons to rejoice–

A child is born for us–

Christmas is here.

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Despite all that we have lost,

We have reasons to rejoice–

A son is born to us–

Christmas is here.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 27, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE THIRD DAY OF CHRISTMAS

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN THE EVANGELIST, APOSTLE AND MARTYR

Noise Pollution   2 comments

Above:  A Television Set

Image Source = Ma8thew

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hd_tv_samsung_LE26R41BD.jpg)

I seek

Peace

And

Quiet

Yet

The television is on

In the other room,

So I sequester myself

Or

Take a walk.

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Off,

Damned television!

Come hither,

Silence!

Be gone,

Vacuous programming!

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Reading,

Writing,

Contemplating–

These I want more and more,

So that I may listen for–

And perhaps hear–

A voice of God.

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But first the heartwarming Hallmark Channel

Christmas movie,

Which will give me spiritual diabetes

If I watch it,

Must go;

It gets in the way

Of silence.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 23, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN OF KANTY, ROMAN CATHOLIC THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHARBEL, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST AND MONK

THE FEAST OF GERALD R. FORD, UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE, VICE PRESIDENT, AND PRESIDENT

THE FEAST OF PERCY SUTTON, CIVIL RIGHTS PIONEER

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A Related Post:

http://neatnik2009.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/liberation-from-television/

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Advent   Leave a comment

Above:  A Scene from St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church, Dunwoody, Georgia, December 12, 2010

Image Source = Bill Monk, Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta

(https://picasaweb.google.com/114749828757741527421/BishopAlexanderSVisitToStPatrickS#5550353925420806802)

Waiting

And

Preparing

For

Christmas

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Anticipating

Nativity

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Seeking

And

Finding

Peace

And

Quiet

To meditate upon

The mystery of the Incarnation

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 14, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT VENANTIUS HONORIUS CLEMENTIUS FORTUNATUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN OF THE CROSS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH, COMPOSER

Epiphanies   Leave a comment

Magi

What do we see?

A young child?

A king?

God incarnate?

The Messiah?

The Savior?

A martyr?

A sage?

A revolutionary?

A threat?

A promise?

How do we understand what we see?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JANUARY 7, 2010

The Journey   Leave a comment

The Magi Journeying, by James Tissot

Traveling far and for many months

To a foreign land

To seek a king

Whose sign is in the sky

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Traveling across the desert

Leaving the comforts of home behind

To embark on a sacred quest

And a storied journey

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Traveling abroad

At great physical risk

To visit a young king

And present him gifts

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 29, 2009

Nativity   Leave a comment

Adoration of the Shepherds, by Georges de La Tour, Circa 1644

God incarnate

In full humanness

Vulnerable

Yet mighty

A mystery

To venerate

Not to attempt to understand

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

December 21, 2009

Piercing the Darkness   Leave a comment

Light Shining in the Darkness

Image Source = Zouavman Le Zouave

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Light_shining2.JPG)

In the midst of

The darkness

Of night

And

Of human brokenness,

Divine light

Burst forth

To bridge the gap

Between

Humankind

And

God.

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Reconciliation

And

Atonement

Began–

Yet in the shadow in of

Another darkness–

Death.

Yet even that darkness

Fell

(In Time)

To Divine Intervention.

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The light shines in the darkness,

And frightens us,

For the darkness is familiar.

God comes to us,

And we turn away,

Out of fear,

Or willfulness,

or misplaced certainty.

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God challenges our traditions,

So we choose the familiar path,

The road well-traveled.

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Yet

The narrative can be different.

We can–

We must–

Follow the light,

Walk out of our cave,

And

Embrace the way of God.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 17, 2009

Christmas   2 comments

Christmas Gifts

Image Source = Kelvin Kay

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Gifts_xmas.jpg)

Christmas is a joyous time

For children far and near.

They try to be very good,

For Santa will soon appear.

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He’ll bring to them their heart’s desires.

They’ll “ooh” and “aah” with glee.

But its with the boxes and ribbons

That they’ll play with happily.

SALLY TAYLOR