October 1, 2023 


EZEKIEL 18:1-4, 25-32; PSALM 25:1-9; PHILIPPIANS 2:1-13; MATTHEW 21:23-32

Jesus’ parable about two sons who don’t do what they say reveals surprises in the region of God.  In the reading from Ezekiel the people claim the ways of the Lord are unfair, while God offers repentance and new life.  Paul urges us to look to Christ as a model of humility, putting the interests of others above our own.  Nourished by the broken bread and shared cup, we offer our lives for the sake of our needy world.

October 8, 2023 


ISAIAH 5:1-7; PSALM 80:7-15; PHILIPPIANS 3:4b-14; MATTHEW 21:33-46

In today’s gospel reading, Jesus tells a vineyard parable, which serves as an image of Israel, the prophets’ mission, and Christ’s death. For Christians, the vineyard also speaks of God’s love poured out in the blood of Christ, given to us for the forgiveness of sin. Grafted onto Christ the vine at baptism, we are nourished with wine and bread so that we may share Christ’s sufferings and know the power of his resurrection.

October 15, 2023  


ISAIAH 25:1-9; PSALM 23; PHILIPPIANS 4:1-9; MATTHEW 22:1-14

In Isaiah we are given a vision of the great feast to come, when God will wipe away death forever.  In Jesus’ parable about a great banquet, those invited do not come, so the invitation is extended to others. In our liturgy God spreads a table before us.  Even amid anxiety and hardship we rejoice in the peace of God which surpasses all understanding.  With great joy we feast at the table of the Lord, and we go forth to share the wonderful invitation with others hungering and thirsting for the abundant life of God.

October 22, 2023 


ISAIAH 45:1-7; PSALM 96:1-9 [10-13]; 1 THESSALONIANS 1:1-10; MATTHEW 22:15-22

In today’s first reading God uses the Gentile ruler Cyrus to accomplish divine purposes.  When the Pharisees try to trap Jesus, he tells them to give the emperor what belongs to him and to God what belongs to God.  To gather for worship reminds us that our ultimate allegiance is to God rather than to any earthly authority.  Created in the image of God, we offer our entire selves in the service of God and for the sake of the world.

October 29, 2023


JEREMIAH 31:31-34; PSALM 46; ROMANS 3:19-28; JOHN 8:31-36

Rooted in the past and growing into the future, the church must always be reformed in order to live out the love of Christ in an ever-changing world.  We celebrate the good news of God’s grace, that Jesus Christ sets us free every day to do this life-transforming work.  Trusting in the freedom given to us in baptism, we pray for the church, that Christians will unite more fully in worship and mission.