HomeSunday Sermon SeriesSunday Sermon Series October 29, 2023

Sunday Sermon Series October 29, 2023

Whether you call them homilies, sermons, or talks, there’s a lot you can learn from the spiritual leaders in our community. While in a perfect world, you’d have time to listen to everyone, that simply isn’t possible for most with limited time to spare. To help, we’ve surfaced and summarized the teachings from the audio sermons of some of the most influential priests and pastors from around town and in the Christian sphere.

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Fr. Mike Schmitz


Fr. Mike Schmitz addresses the theme of being “Lost” in life and the quest to discover one’s vocation and purpose. He acknowledges that many people often find themselves unsure of where they are headed and how to get there. Fr. Mike emphasizes that having a sense of destination is crucial in the journey of life, and this destination is rooted in the call to holiness and a relationship with God. He distinguishes three senses of call: the universal call to holiness, the specific vocations like marriage, priesthood, etc., and the daily call to love.

Fr. Mike shares the story of Yan Ternowski, a single man who dedicated his life to love and teaching love to others. Yan’s life illustrates the idea that the primary relationship with God and the call to love whoever is in front of you is the way to navigate through life’s changing seasons. Fr. Mike also references St. Therese of Lisieux, who realized that her vocation was to be love in the heart of the Church. He highlights that love is the most excellent path leading to God and that embracing this vocation to be love is the key to finding contentment and purpose.

In summary, Fr. Mike’s homily encourages individuals to recognize that they are not truly lost when they focus on loving God and loving their neighbors, allowing love to be the guiding force in their lives, regardless of their specific vocations or life circumstances.

Listen to the full version here.

Buckhead Church

Under the Circumstances

In Andy Stanley’s sermon, he discusses the common human tendency to associate God’s goodness and presence with the circumstances in our lives. When things are going well, people often assume that God is good and present in their lives, but when life takes a downturn, they may question God’s goodness or feel distant from Him. Stanley points out that many people fall into the trap of trying to create a formula for gaining God’s favor or attention when they are facing difficult situations.

He emphasizes that many people attend church or engage in religious practices when their lives are not going well, in an attempt to seek God’s favor. This behavior is often based on the idea of finding the right combination to make things go right. People also grapple with the question of why it seems like others, who may not be as virtuous, are blessed while they are facing difficulties.

Stanley delves into the issue of how pastors and preachers sometimes attribute God’s name to promises that God never made. He explains that part of this confusion arises from a blending of the Old Testament and New Testament covenants. The Old Covenant was specific to ancient Israel as a nation and was based on the nation’s leaders’ obedience. When leaders obeyed God, the nation prospered, but when they disobeyed, the entire nation faced consequences.

In contrast, Stanley highlights the New Covenant established by Jesus, which offers a different promise: eternal life and a personal relationship with God. Under the New Covenant, Christians do not need to look at their circumstances to determine their standing with God. Instead, they look to Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross as the assurance of God’s love, presence, and willingness to intervene in their lives.

Stanley encourages believers to distinguish between the Old Covenant promises made to Israel and the New Covenant promises given to all humanity through Jesus. He advises people not to look for promises in the Old Covenant that were not intended for them, as this can lead to disappointment and misunderstanding. He emphasizes that God’s promises to Christians are anchored in Jesus’ New Covenant and provide the assurance of God’s unconditional love and presence, regardless of life’s circumstances.

In the end, Stanley calls on his audience to fix their eyes on Jesus in the midst of hardships and not on their circumstances. He cites the example of believers who endured suffering and adversity with unwavering faith as witnesses to God’s presence and faithfulness. Stanley emphasizes the importance of persevering through life’s challenges by focusing on Jesus, who endured the cross for the joy set before Him, and assures believers that their faith in Him will lead to a better future.

Listen to the full version here.

Cathedral of Christ The King

Monsignor Francis McNamee’s homily begins with a humorous story about God observing the behavior of people on Earth and expressing disappointment that 95% of them are misbehaving. He jokingly mentions that God tried to send an email to the 5% who were good but didn’t receive it himself, highlighting the human tendency to focus on our imperfections rather than our virtues.

The central message of the homily revolves around the Gospel’s greatest commandment: to love the Lord with all one’s heart, soul, and mind, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself. McNamee acknowledges the challenge of this commandment due to human nature and our struggles with pride, anger, and stubbornness. He emphasizes that loving one’s neighbor is an essential element in giving one’s heart and mind to God and that the two aspects, love of God and love of neighbor, are inseparable.

The homily encourages the congregation to examine their relationships and the walls they may have built between themselves and others, stressing the importance of forgiveness and reconciliation. McNamee acknowledges that living out this commandment is difficult and that it’s an ongoing process, but he underscores the necessity of making the effort to reconcile with others and bring these issues to God through prayer and confession.

Furthermore, the homily emphasizes that our religion and holiness become meaningless if we cut ourselves off from the people worshiping alongside us. McNamee highlights the importance of recognizing the face of Christ in all individuals, particularly those who are cast aside or in need. He closes by reminding the congregation that the gospel is not just an ideal but a way of life, encouraging them to act justly, love tenderly, and walk humbly with God as they move forward toward a brighter future.

Listen to the full version here.

Passion City Church

In this sermon by Louie Giglio, he begins by addressing the congregation and expressing his excitement about the upcoming Passion 2024 event. He invites everyone to join in and emphasizes the significance of the journey they are on as a community.

Giglio takes the audience back to the origins of their journey and the founding of Passion, the organization and movement that he is a part of. He encourages people to reflect on their own genealogy and how quickly generations change, underscoring the importance of understanding their roots and how it informs their current path.

The speaker shares his personal journey, starting with his time in grad school and his unexpected involvement in college ministry in Houston. He talks about how he met his future wife, Shelly, during that time and how their experiences led them to Baylor University, where they began a Bible study that eventually grew into a large student gathering.

He also highlights pivotal moments that influenced him, such as hearing John Piper’s message on the glory of God, and how a student’s journal entry during a meeting in Berkeley inspired him to pursue an awakening among college students. These events, combined with a deepening understanding of the glory of God, led to the birth of Passion and its mission to inspire young people to say “yes, Lord” and walk in the way of God’s truth while eagerly waiting for His name and renown to be made known.

Giglio further describes the growth of Passion from its inception in 1997, beginning with a few thousand attendees and expanding to events across the United States and internationally. He emphasizes how the movement’s core message, rooted in Isaiah 26:8 and centered on God’s glory, has remained consistent and continues to inspire new generations.

The sermon concludes with Giglio’s retelling of the founding of Passion City Church, a local expression of their vision, as well as a call for the congregation to actively participate in their mission by providing scholarships, serving at events, and praying for the advancement of the kingdom of God.

Listen to the full version here.

Trinity Anglican Church

Kris McDaniel focuses on a passage from the Bible, specifically Matthew 22, where a Pharisee, seeking to test Jesus, asks Him which commandment in the law is the greatest. Jesus responds by saying that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind, and the second is to love your neighbor as yourself. He emphasizes that all the law and the prophets hang on these two commandments, highlighting the importance of love in God’s eyes.

Kris McDaniel points out that this question about what is most important in life is significant, and it’s something that many people ponder as they navigate their own life journeys. He acknowledges that we often seek to understand what is most important, especially as we grow older and reach a midpoint in our lives.

The sermon delves into the concept of love and how it has been understood in different ways. McDaniel emphasizes that classical love, as understood by the Greeks and, by extension, the devout in the time of Jesus, is about desiring the good of another. It is an unselfish, sacrificial love that focuses on the well-being of the other person.

The sermon also explores how Jesus teaches that loving God, loving others, and loving yourself are interconnected. Loving God involves giving Him what He deserves, looking up, and worshipping Him. Loving others includes considering intimate and nearby relationships, looking out and beyond oneself. Additionally, loving yourself appropriately is vital, as it affects how you perceive and love others. McDaniel encourages self-reflection and journaling to internalize and apply these principles in daily life.

Listen to the full version here.

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