Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2019


John 13:31-35
May 19, 2019
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling, IL
Christina Berry

Often for confirmation, we choose a focus scripture,
rather than what is in the Revised Common Lectionary.
But this time, the Lectionary accommodates us
with the perfect gospel choice in John 13:31-35.

The gospel of John asks lot of its readers.
John’s gospel does not always have a story line like the other gospels.
Sometimes it sounds more like a poem than a narrative;
most of the time it is concerned with symbols and signs.
In the thirteenth chapter, though,
we do enter into the part of the story
that is about to conclude with Jesus’ crucifixion.

The chapter begins: “Now before the festival of the Passover,
Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father.
Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.”

Jesus is gathered with his friends in an upper room in Jerusalem,
where they have come for the feast of the Passover.
To their surprise, he takes …

Faith, Fish, and the Feeding of Lambs

John 21:1-19
May 5, 2019
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling, IL
Christina Berry

It’s the third Sunday of Easter
and John’s gospel brings us another post-resurrection appearance.
Jesus has appeared to the disciples twice in the upper room,
but they decide to return home to their old lives.
In this scripture, some unspecified time after his resurrection,
Jesus appears to them by the Sea of Tiberias.
They are surprised, and changed, by this encounter with the Risen Lord.

The same may be true of us!

Even though Easter Sunday is past, the Easter season continues.
In fact, it will be Easter now until Pentecost, fifty days after Easter Sunday.
We are still in the season of the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus.
But like his disciples, we may have returned to life as usual.
Jesus, our Risen Lord, calls us to something more than life as usual.

Let’s listen for God’s word to us in John 21:1-19
After these things Jesus showed himself again to the disciples
by the Sea of Tiberias; and he …