This podcast features homilies delivered by Pastor Sal Sapienza at Douglas Congregational United Church of Christ -- a progressive, inclusive, open and affirming faith community located in Saugatuck/Douglas, Michigan. To learn more, visit https://www.douglasucc.org
You Can Heal Your Life
Today’s gospel tells about a miraculous healing at the Pool of Bethesda. Do modern shrines like Lourdes and Medjugorje really heal people? Pastor Sal explains how we can experience divine healing in our lives today.
A New Commandment: Love One Another￼
Jesus gave us a new commandment that he said summed up all other commandments: to love one another. Pastor Sal explores how to love one another in a world so divided.
The Shepherd’s Voice
The UCC motto is, "God is Still Speaking" and Jesus, the Good Shepherd, instructs us to follow his Divine Voice. Pastor Sal talks about how to listen more closely to our inner GPS (God Positioning System). It will lead to pastures of plenty and rest for our souls.
Are You Spiritually Fed?
So many people in our world today are spiritually malnourished. How can we spiritually feed ourselves and one another? Pastor Sal talks about a third resurrection story, where the risen Christ appears to Simon Peter and instructs him to ‘feed my sheep.’
The Benefits of Doubt
The Apostle ‘Doubting’ Thomas didn't believe that Jesus had risen from the dead. We've been led to believe that doubting is an obstacle to faith, but Thomas Merton said, "A man of faith who has not experienced doubt is not a man of great faith." Pastor Sal reminds us that we need to be asking questions.
The Resurrection of the Light in YOU
On Easter we rejoice and rise up, for we can use its message to transform the challenges we face. The Light of Christ invites us to walk in the newness of life. This resurrecting power restores and uplifts us.
Eisegesis, Not Exegesis
I have listened to a few of Sal’s sermons, and while his conclusions might appear groundbreaking in progressive circles, he does not engage the text as plainly written, and most of what he deduces is deeply anachronistic. I have noted on a number of occasions where I had to go back into earlier parts of his sermon so as to ensure that I was reading the same text. I myself have been a minister for more than fifteen years, with an MDiv and an Advanced Degree (meaning that I took and passed all doctoral work, but was unable to complete my dissertation due to an extended family emergency), so I do have extensive theological training. I say none of this as a means of being cruel. Rather, I have great concern for what is being taught here. It does not reflect historic Christianity in any tangible way, and rather than allowing the Biblical text to define the sermon, Scripture is poorly applied (sometimes only referring to five words of a verse) to a sermon that is often synchronistic, heterodox, and long set held in Sal’s ethic before the Bible was ever opened.