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Sermons

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation.” — Mark 16:15

Sermon Archive

To keep up-to-date on our sermons, subscribe to our SMC sermon podcast through iTunes, or by searching your Podcasts app for “Seattle Mennonite Church Sermons,” or through our podcast page.
Love at the pointy end of betrayal

Love at the pointy end of betrayal

If you've ever found yourself on the pointy end of betrayal, I bet you'd tell a story of someone you loved. Or love still. So it is with God and God's people - at the time of the prophet Hosea and now. How can we ever come back from the ways in which we have betrayed...

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Saints and Troublemakers

Saints and Troublemakers

Pastor Amy recites the tale of Elijah's encounter with King Ahab and the dramatic showdown on Mount Carmel.  Elijah was accused by the king of being a troublemaker.  He absolutely was.  In the way he challenged courageously, engaged humor and sarcasm (he had a potty...

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Needing More Beauty

Needing More Beauty

A woman anoints Jesus' head with precious perfume. She offers this extravagant - even wasteful - gift under the angry eyes of the disapproving disciples. Yet Jesus says of that "what she has done will be told in memory of her."  Sheldon Burkhalter explores the joy,...

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David Is Not Jesus

David Is Not Jesus

King David is unmatched in the Hebrew Bible in stature and name recognition. How can this flawed and fallible person be THE ONE that is so lauded and admired? Pastor Amy tries to cut through the "himpathy" and propaganda to see David with the eyes of Jesus. Which...

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Journey Stories

Journey Stories

This sermon by Pete Lagerwey didn't get recorded, but Pete gracious shared his manuscript for anyone who would like to read or revisit his exploration of the journey that Naomi and Ruth embarked on and the journey we each take over the course of our lives as followers...

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Hello My Name Is…

Hello My Name Is…

God goes by many names.  Maybe that's why when Moses asked a burning bush for it's name, God side stepped the question with the vaguest and most specific of answers: I AM.  The God of our ancestors is big enough and intimate enough to answer to all names. [buzzsprout...

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God Wrestler

God Wrestler

Tim Kuepfer, Pastor at Chinatown Peace Church, Vancouver BC Narrative Lectionary, Year 2 Genesis 32:9-13, 22-30 Photo above provided by Tim: wrestling with his three sons.

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Breathed into Life

Breathed into Life

Compared to the first chapter of Genesis, the story of creation in chapter two is tender and intimate, and speaks of God's caring closeness.  God's fingerprints are all over creation and God's breath animates all creatures.  When God scoops up some mud and created the...

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Hope in Suffering

Hope in Suffering

Long-time SMC member Lenae Nofziger recounts the places in her own life and in scripture where she find hope.  She includes her own bout with depression, the story of Mother Teresa, the strength of the prophets, the compassion and empathy of Jesus possible because of...

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Conferences and Conventions: Reflections

Conferences and Conventions: Reflections

Listen to sharing about the delegates and youth who participated in our annual gathering of Mennonite kin from our region and our denomination.  Jennifer Delanty, Sabrina Lindquist and Madeleine Kelly Kellogg. [buzzsprout...

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Coming Home

Coming Home

Rita Kowats leads us in worship and reflects on the gift and rhythm of retreat. The sons of a father are lost - to the distant country of fast living and the distant country rules and jealousy.  The woman is lost and isolated by years of unclean bleeding.  Through...

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A Sabbath COMMAND

A Sabbath COMMAND

Yep, that's ALL-CAPS on the COMMAND. What are we - a people who don't much like to be commanded at all - to do about having been commanded to remember the sabbath and keep it holy? What are we to do about the fact that we - on the regular - DON'T remember the sabbath...

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Healing for the Disoriented

Healing for the Disoriented

After hearing Mike read the gospel from Luke, Anna & Kevin each reflect - thoughtfully, vulnerably, honestly - on the story of Jesus offering healing to all 10 lepers though only one would say thanks, and God's coming to those (like us) most disoriented and lost. ...

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The Overwhelming Flood

The Overwhelming Flood

Pastor Amy amplifies the voice of the Psalmist, who's prayer is angry, depressed and anxious. While these aren't emotions that we think we're supposed to feel in church, God has no problem with them. In fact, that's exactly where we can bring our grossest, most petty...

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Faith Action Climate Team – reflections

Faith Action Climate Team – reflections

What a gift to have these contemporary prophets & friends leading us in worship. Listen to inspiring stories and inspired reflections from members of the ecumenical / interfaith "Faith Action Climate Team" here in Seattle: Abby Brockway, Lynn Fitz-Hugh, and Keith...

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A Psalm for something as fickle as happiness

A Psalm for something as fickle as happiness

We begin a worship series on the Psalms and, with huge credit to Walter Brueggemann, Pastor Megan begins by exploring how folks "on the desperate edge of their lives" cried these prayers and songs destined to last and resonate for thousands of years. And because a...

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A whirlwind of God’s Spirit in Romans 8

A whirlwind of God’s Spirit in Romans 8

Listen to reflections from Pastor Megan interspersed with the reading of most of Romans 8 by Pastors Melanie & Jonathan. It's a whirlwind tour, but in the wind of that whirlwind, in the breath that allows words to be heard, and the breath that creates spaces...

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Weapons for Justice

Weapons for Justice

Don't be an righteous tool, be a weapon of justice!  With the armor of God, you too can do battle against the sin of white supremacy, racism and sexism.  Sin's power is strong but new life in Christ and with the grace of God, we are free to shake off that power....

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A wild and wooly, mad and holy Spirit for ALL

A wild and wooly, mad and holy Spirit for ALL

"What God has made clean, you must not call profane." Peter has visions of (forbidden) food while hungry and praying on a rooftop in Joppa, but it turns out to be far more than just a hunger-induced delusion. It turns out to be inspiration for him and his gatekeeping...

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Worship. Doubt. Disciple.

Worship. Doubt. Disciple.

Pastor Amy remembers the words of Waziyatawin, who told our congregation: These words do violence.  The "Great Commission" in Matthew 28 is used to uphold the Doctrine of Discovery and has given white European colonizers a supposed reason to subdue and subjugate...

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Dispatches from the Uprising

Dispatches from the Uprising

The Empire tried to squash the Jesus Way of liberating love by killing him, and failed... miserably. Because life rose up. People, empowered by the Spirit of God, rose up. To proclaim and LIVE liberation and revolution and powerful insurrections of love together. Led...

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Palms and Protest

Palms and Protest

Hosanna! Save Us!  The cries carry Jesus from the donkey on the road into the temple, where he answers the call to save by with healing.  Children and youth are even now calling out "save us".  How may we respond with Christ-like action of action for justice and...

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Judgment Day & Jesus’ Fam

Judgment Day & Jesus’ Fam

Ye olde sheep & goats. Pastor Megan shares how this passage meant so much to her in a time of shifting theologies and a changing faithview. Also making an appearance: Menno Simons, Mother Teresa, chevre, and #notallgoats. [buzzsprout episode='1030864'...

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Weeping & Gnashing of Teeth: Grace?

Weeping & Gnashing of Teeth: Grace?

It's our Gifts Discernment Sunday so there's only time for a brief homily, but Pastor Megan dips her toes in yet another "weeping & gnashing of teeth" kin-dom of God parable from Matthew and wonders if what sounds like punishment might, in fact, be grace?? Listen...

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Oozing With Love

Oozing With Love

With our foundation rooted in our beloved-ness as children of God, what does it mean to live from that place as we hear Jesus’ teaching? Our pastoral intern, Christie Dahlin, explores this question, ponders the connection with the TV show "The Good Place," and centers...

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Weeds, Wheat, & Yeast

Weeds, Wheat, & Yeast

"I gotta say: I really hate it when one of Jesus’ stories ends with evildoers getting thrown into fire. Don’t get me wrong, I dislike 'evildoers' as much as the next person, but burning them alive seems a little extreme..." Pastor Megan dives into some challenging...

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An episodic exploration of generosity

An episodic exploration of generosity

Pastor Megan took us on a journey in this sermon. It is - to start - an invitation to prayer, then a snapshot, a wondering, a snippet, a slippery word, a preference, a story, a question, a complication, an affirmation, an encouragement, and - at last - a prayer. Come...

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Stories of Land and our Ancestors

Stories of Land and our Ancestors

"We want our forbears to stand on the right side of history...perhaps these cognitive gymnastics are a vain attempt to justify what is actually untenable."  Jennifer Delanty talks about her realization as an adult that the way the stories she'd been told as a child...

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Power of Ritual

Power of Ritual

Jesus is baptized by John the Baptist in the River Jordan. This water ritual does more than simply mark his shift to public ministry; it effects that significant transition. Pastor Megan explores the inherent power in ritual to help effect transition in our lives -...

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Refugees & Weeping

Refugees & Weeping

Jesus was a refugee. Jesus IS a refugee (and their name is Jakelin Caal Maquin, Felipe Gomez Alonzo). A weeping mother refuses to be consoled. What if the truest thing we can say from this Scripture is that we too ought to be inconsolable in the face of the horrific?...

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I Am From

I Am From

Pastor Amy looks at those first 18 verses of Matthew that we usually skip over to get to the narrative.  But that first list of begats tell a story of their own.  They tell the story of who Jesus came from, especially the significant and unusual women in his family...

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Roots for Windstorms

Roots for Windstorms

Here in Seattle, we've experienced an unusually windstormy couple of weeks, which makes an apt metaphor for our lives of gusty national politics, devastating news cycles, and the sturm & drang of December activities, expectations, and negotiations of awkward or...

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No Justice, No Peace: Esther’s Courage

No Justice, No Peace: Esther’s Courage

Esther was more than just a vapid beauty queen.  When her people were in danger she put her life on her line and used her power and privilege to accomplish justice.  Esther's risk can teach us something about when and how we can examine our privilege and risk our...

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Tender & Infinitely Fallible

Tender & Infinitely Fallible

Like a good spiritual director who knows we are both tender (in need of care) and infinitely fallible (in need of challenge), the prophet Jeremiah attends to a people in despair, and Pastor Megan invites us to receive his care and challenge in our own time and place....

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When you seek a cure, but find healing instead

When you seek a cure, but find healing instead

We hear the story, rich with details and characters, of Naaman seeking a cure for his leprosy. Naaman's dogged pursuit of a cure is transactional and full of all the power plays he's accustomed to utilizing to his advantage, and it turns out he needs to be healed from...

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A Jubilee Epistle for All Saints

A Jubilee Epistle for All Saints

"To the angel of the Mennonite Church of Seattle..." Our 50-year-anniversary celebration weekend built toward our All Saints worship in which we heard letters of greeting, remembrance, and blessing from many of our former pastors. Pastor Megan shared her own epistle,...

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Not of this world?

Not of this world?

King Solomon plays a deadly game of chicken, with an infant's life at stake, and for this is he is called wise. Pastor Megan explores the anti-monarchy sentiment buried within this and other stories related to ancient Israel's kings, and considers the...

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Bathsheba’s #MeToo

Bathsheba’s #MeToo

Every woman has a story in which her body was in some way violated by a man.  In which her consent was not sought.  For Bathsheba her #MeToo moment changed the entire direction of her life.  When David summoned and assaulted her she had no recourse.  While there's...

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Final Words

Final Words

We continue our journey with the Narrative Lectionary into Joshua. Pastor Megan reflects on Joshua's final oration to his beloved people. You'll have to listen to figure out what on earth Yoda's got to do with it. Megan M...

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How Do You Feel About Boundaries?

How Do You Feel About Boundaries?

We welcomed Katherine Jameson Pitts, PNMC Executive Conference Minister, to reflect on covenant and the gift of boundaries that draw us to the center.  The ten commandments are often co-opted by institutions and governments as a litmus test for political affiliation. ...

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The Bad Guy Needs to Die

The Bad Guy Needs to Die

Pastor Amy explores why the destruction of Pharaoh's army is so important to the story of the deliverance of the people of Israel and how, when it's used as a recurring chorus of salvation, a people oppressed need a God who is powerful enough to conquer armies.  And...

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A Can of Worms & Immigration Stories

A Can of Worms & Immigration Stories

What a week to hear this story! Listen as Pastor Megan exposes some of the troubling and resonant layers of our Genesis story of Joseph and Potiphar's unnamed wife. And yet heed the call to mark (Just)Peace Sunday with our Mennonite kindred across the...

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A Call No One Would Want

A Call No One Would Want

Pastor Megan explores the extreme vulnerability Abram & Sarai must have experienced as part of their call to "get up and go" from their land and kindred. Megan M Ramer Narrative Lectionary - Year 1 Genesis...

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Wrestled Claims About God

Wrestled Claims About God

On this first Sunday of our Narrative Lectionary adventure, we start at the very beginning: Genesis. Pastor Megan wrestles with how Creator God becomes Destroyer God in the story of the flood, and the re-covenanting that takes place after. [buzzsprout...

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Forgiveness

Forgiveness

Pastor Megan reflects on the people we carry around within us, "releasing" and "retaining" the sins of others, and the ongoing practice of forgiveness. Megan Ramer — None Acts 7.55-60 Matthew 5.21-26, 38-48 Judy...

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Sustenance

Sustenance

On this Sunday, Pastor Megan shared the words of Jan Richardson, offering them as sustenance: “The Gastronomical Jesus.” Megan Ramer — None Exodus 16.2-4, 9-15 John 6.24-35 Jan Richardson, “The Gastronomical...

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Church Meeting Brings … Hope?!!

Church Meeting Brings … Hope?!!

A large groups of SMCers traveled to Boise this summer and had a great time! Pastor Megan reports on the annual meeting of Pacific Northwest Mennonite Conference that took place in Boise ID at the end of June. She shares stories, reflections, business, “fun details,”...

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Fire & Brimstone

Fire & Brimstone

We welcomed Erica Lea-Simka, pastor of Albuquerque Mennonite Church in Albuquerque NM, to preach for our Pride Sunday worship. Erica Lea-Simka, Pastor of Albuquerque Mennonite Church — None — None — None

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Seeds Grow

Seeds Grow

Pastor Megan reflects on the most “boring” of all parables in which nothings happens … or is it EVERYthing happens? Listen for punch lines like: “the smallest of all seeds which, when sown, grows and becomes the greatest of all … shrubs!” and “if there were 7 habits...

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Misfits

Misfits

Reflecting on Mark’s story of Jesus facing accusers very early in his ministry, Pastor Megan explores how “Scribes … they’re just like us!”, has a few words to say about the supposed “unforgiveable sin,” and shares her desire to be among the misfits who get to sit at...

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Collage of God

Collage of God

On Trinity-ish / Trinity-PLUS Sunday, Pastor Megan shares snapshots of some of the MANY names for God and images of God that make up her limited yet growing collage of who God is. Megan Ramer — None Various Psalms — None Excerpts from the Psalms, reflecting some of...

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I will put my Spirit within you

I will put my Spirit within you

In this sermon from Pentecost Sunday, when we celebrated baptism and covenant, Pastor Amy preaches the Holy Spirit, who is active and expansive and from whom there is no getting away. God’s promise is to breathe into our dry bones and enliven what feels barren, to...

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Goodbyes

Goodbyes

All goodbyes are not created equal. Listen as Pastor Megan reflects on a couple of the goodbyes she’s experienced, her semi-obsession with good goodbyes, and what we can learn about all of this from the time Jesus said goodbye for the last time to his closest friends...

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Building Social Capital

Building Social Capital

Pastor Melanie reflects on the story of the Ethiopian eunuch and Philip from the book of Acts, listening for some resonance with our Community Ministries here in the Lake City neighborhood. From something about Jesus that is attractive and transformative … to nothing...

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Other Sheep

Other Sheep

I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold, Jesus said. I must bring them also… So there will be one flock, one shepherd. Pastor Megan reflects on those other metaphorical sheep. In the particular. Who are they? Who are WE? Megan Ramer — None — None Photo by...

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In Strides Jesus

In Strides Jesus

Pastor Megan reflects on fearful disciples gathered behind locked doors in Jerusalem. Through the locked doors of their fear, in strides Jesus. Speaking a word of peace, in strides Jesus. Megan Ramer Easter John 20:19 Photo by Bogdan Dada on...

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Can anything good come out of a trap house?

Can anything good come out of a trap house?

Pastor Jonathan reflects on when life goes sideways and finding hope amidst the impossible and fearful. Sharing stories of the unexpected uprising of life in our own community, this sermon is not to be missed. Jonathan Neufeld — None — None Photo by Matt Collamer on...

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Cross and the Lynching Tree

Cross and the Lynching Tree

Jesus' carefully calculated and lampooning political march into Jerusalem helped ensure that he would need to die on the cross, along with many other brave prophets before and after him. Pastor Megan reflects on James Cones' eye-opening theological work in "The Cross...

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Glory & Death

Glory & Death

Jason Rust preaches for us - reflecting on glory and death and earthiness and bodies and Mary Oliver poetry and unplanted seeds and lassitude and recklessness in love. You'll just have to listen to how these delightful strands are woven into an intricate whole...!...

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A Slithering Slew of Venomous Vipers

A Slithering Slew of Venomous Vipers

What to do with the story in Numbers of God sending poisonous snakes to mortally wound the Israelites in the desert? What on earth could this story have to say to us? Listen as Pastor Megan takes a crack at seeking understanding and a word of good news in this...

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Small Things Matter

Small Things Matter

As Christians we've inherited a rather confused message about "The Law." Historically Christians have loved the Ten Commandments, even advocating for their physical presence at our public places (hello ... separation of church and state??), while dismissing the rest...

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A Name That is True

A Name That is True

Amy explores the way El Shaddai, “The Breasted One,” blesses and calls the old bodies Abraham and Sarah with new names and a new identity and the way we are called to honor the true names and identities of people who identify as trans or gender non-conforming. Names...

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Lament & A Rainbow Promise for All

Lament & A Rainbow Promise for All

Pastor Megan leads us in lament for victims of gun violence, specifically the 17 precious youth and adults gunned down by a teenager with an assault rifle in Parkland, Florida this past week. And then she reflects on the very first covenant described by the Bible - a...

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Joining My Voice

Joining My Voice

Pastor Megan invites us, like Jesus did when he retreated for prayer in the dark early morning hours, to dwell with the Psalms as we begin to process together having heard a challenging word from our Peace Lecture guests last Sunday, Waziyatawin and John Stoesz. Megan...

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