Living the Anticipation, with Joy and New Light – Tom Mundahl reflects on what it means to be whole. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, Year B (2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11 Psalm 126 1 Thessalonians 6:16-24 John 1:6-8, 19-28 Traditionally, the Third Sunday in Advent has been called “Gaudete Sunday,” a Sunday to “rejoice” as we turn in hope and expectation toward the Coming One. As the title, Gaudete, originally stems from the Vulgate translation of Philippians 4:4, “Gaudete in Domino semper” (“rejoice in the Lord always”), this week’s readings do not neglect thisRead More →

Thinking about the Unthinkable – Tom Mundahl reflects on our desert struggle in the time of climate crisis. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, Year B (2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) Isaiah 40:1-11 Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 2 Peter 3:8-15a Mark 1:1-8 Few themes sound more forcefully during Advent than the promise of comfort.  We are moved by Handel’s oratorio, “Messiah,” as the tenor takes up the prophet’s voice with the clear tones of “Comfort ye, Comfort ye, Comfort ye, my people.” Many of us will invite congregations to echo that message with Olearius’ hymn, “ Comfort, Comfort NowRead More →

Thinking the Unthinkable – Tom Mundahl reflects on our communal lament and hope for wholeness. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary  Readings for the Second Sunday of Advent, Year B (2020, 2023) Isaiah 40:1-11 Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 2 Peter 3:8-15a Mark 1:1-8 Few themes sound more powerfully during Advent than the promise of comfort. We cannot help being moved by Handel’s Messiah as the tenor takes up the prophet’s voice with the clear tones of “Comfort ye, comfort ye, comfort ye my people.” During this “Covid year,” we will likely miss lifting our voices together in Olearius’ hymn, “Comfort, Comfort Now My People”Read More →

Living in Promises and Hope – Tom Mundahl reflects on land and the struggle to “till (serve) and keep” it to this day. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Tom Mundhal in 2017) Readings for the Second Sunday in Lent, Year A (2017, 2020, 2023) Genesis 12:1-4aPsalm 121Romans 4:1-1, 13-17John 3:1-17 As we move from the Genesis pre-history (ch. 1-11) to God’s calling into being a new community, the centrality of creation and the vocation to “till (serve) and keep” (Genesis 2:15) remains.  The “events” of the proto-history — expulsion from the garden, the first murder, the flood, and the human effortRead More →

Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.  – Tom Mundahl reflects on our need to trust in God’s creation. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Tom Mundahl in 2014) Readings for the Sixth Sunday after Epiphany, Year A (2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) Deuteronomy 30:15-20 Psalm 119:1-8 1 Corinthians 3:1-9 Matthew 5:21-37 Even healthy memories can be buried deeply. It was only yesterday that what surely is a foundation of my creation faith “bubbled up” into consciousness. At every worship service I attended as a child, the pastor would intone: “My help is in theRead More →

Gentle justice for people and creation:  Tom Mundahl reflects on Jesus’ baptism and the first Servant Song of Isaiah. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Tom Mundahl in 2014) Readings for the Baptism of Our Lord (January 7-13), First Sunday after Epiphany in Year A (2014, 2017, 2020, 2023) Isaiah 42:1-9 Psalm 29 Acts 10:34 -43 Matthew 3:13-17 As we celebrate the Baptism of Our Lord, we are reminded of the power of baptismal liturgy. As those called by the Spirit and trusting the grace of God gather around the font, the presiding minister invites the candidates and sponsors toRead More →

Offering Life for the World – Tom Mundahl reflects on Christ’s suffering and death. Care for Creation Commentary on the Common Lectionary (originally written by Tom Mundahl in 2017) Readings for the Sunday of Passion, Year A (2017, 2020, 2023) Matthew 21:1-11 Isaiah 50:4-9a Psalm 31:9-16 Philippians 2:5-11 Matthew 26:14-27: 66 or Matthew 27:11-54 The Sunday of the Passion begins the eight-day holy week, which culminates in the central celebration of the Christian faith: the passage of Jesus from death to life marked by the Three Days. Not only do the readings contain rich support for serving creation, but the gospel readings show the cosmic significanceRead More →