The Sixth Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, Grace Church, Spring Hill

“Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you… for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets” (Lk. 6:22-23).

Luke’s version of the Sermon on the Mount, unlike Matthew’s more familiar version, poses a series of blessings and curses. Jesus pronounces only blessings in Matthew’s version: on the poor in spirit, on those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, on the pure in heart, and … Read more

Bishop’s Day with Wardens, Vestry Members, and Treasurers, Church of the Resurrection, Franklin

“For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole purpose of God” (Acts 20:27).

Our gathering today is graced by the observance of Charles Todd Quintard, whose memory we celebrate today. Bishop Quintard was our second bishop in Tennessee, elected in the aftermath of the Civil War, and following the death of Bishop Otey almost two years previously. Quintard was from Connecticut, a medical doctor who had come south to practice and teach … Read more

The Fifth Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, St. Matthew’s Church, McMinnville

“Jesus said to Simon, ‘Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch’” (Lk. 5:4).

Some stories a priest hears only after being called. When I arrived at a new parish as rector some years ago, a friend on the search committee told me that when they were doing their work and had received a list of names from the bishop, the bishop had written by my name, “Fr. Bauerschmidt … Read more

The Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, Church of the Holy Spirit, Nashville

“Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations” (Jer. 1:4-5).

Prophets are called by God. Prophets have a definite experience of being set apart by God for specific work. God reveals himself to the person he has chosen and outlines the appointed task. But all call begins with revelation, an … Read more

The Third Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, Epiphany Church, Lebanon

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me” (Lk. 4:18).

Jesus is reading from the prophet Isaiah this morning, here in our gospel today; recalling the vision of prophetic anointing, the announcement of a new day to come and a new hope ahead. The Prophet had foreseen a time when God’s Spirit would rest upon an anointed one, a Messiah in other words. This Messiah or King would put the … Read more

The Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle, Diocesan Convention, Trinity Church, Clarksville

“God… was pleased to reveal his Son to me, that I might proclaim him among the Gentiles” (Gal. 1:15-16).

Stephen Hawking wrote in his book, A Brief History of Time, about singularities: that is, what takes place at the end of a star’s life, when space-time collapses and a black hole is formed; or what happens at the beginning, with the Big Bang, when the universe begins to expand. Both events posit a singularity: a … Read more

The Second Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, Holy Trinity Church, Nashville

“For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent” (Is. 62:1).

It says in the Nicene Creed that we recite each Sunday that the Holy Spirit has “spoken through the prophets.” Speech is often the gift that the Holy Spirit gives; in fact, it seems to be its signature tune. Just look at the gifts of the Spirit listed by St. Paul in our second reading today and you’ll see how many of them have to … Read more

The First Sunday after Epiphany, Year C, St. Peter’s Church, Columbia

“But now thus says the Lord: ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine’” (Is. 43:1).

Epiphany is the season of revelation: the manifestation of God’s glory in Christ. During the season we’re given stories that reveal the person of Jesus Christ. Last week, our Gospel reading of the visit of the Wise Men to Bethlehem, to worship and adore the Messiah; next week, Christ’s first miracle … Read more

The Feast of the Epiphany, Church of the Epiphany, Sherwood

“We observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage” (Matt. 2:2).

If you look up at the night sky, you will see the stars and planets, and the moon in season; maybe some other things as well: satellites whirring around, a stray plane or two, maybe a comet or shooting star. People don’t know as much as they used to about the objects in the night sky. The ability to discern … Read more

Christmas Eve, Christ Church Cathedral, Nashville

“When the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us… according to his mercy” (Tit. 3:4-5).

“Grace” means “gift”: something given freely, not because it’s owed but because it’s in the power of the giver to bestow it. We sometimes make a distinction between a gift that’s deserved and one that’s undeserved, but once we start talking about what we’re owed or about our prior claim we’re no longer talking about … Read more