99 episodes

Sunday Sermons from San Francisco's Grace Cathedral, home to a community where the best of Episcopal tradition courageously embraces innovation and open-minded conversation. At Grace Cathedral, inclusion is expected and people of all faiths are welcomed. The cathedral itself, a renowned San Francisco landmark, serves as a magnet where diverse people gather to worship, celebrate, seek solace, converse and learn.

Sermons from Grace Cathedral Grace Cathedral

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.4 • 25 Ratings

Sunday Sermons from San Francisco's Grace Cathedral, home to a community where the best of Episcopal tradition courageously embraces innovation and open-minded conversation. At Grace Cathedral, inclusion is expected and people of all faiths are welcomed. The cathedral itself, a renowned San Francisco landmark, serves as a magnet where diverse people gather to worship, celebrate, seek solace, converse and learn.

    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    San Francisco’s Beautiful Ugly Truth
    “[W]however wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all” (Mk. 10).
    How do you know if Christianity is true? Proving that there is a personal God or heaven, the trinity or the divinity of Christ might be difficult. Arguing that our religion is the best religion seems silly. I’d much rather hear about what I can learn from other religions than debate their relative deficiencies.
    Instead I want to ask about perhaps the central teaching in the Gospel of Mark. Jesus is talking about status and its meaning in our life. Quite simply is it better for us as individuals and a society when people use power to dominate others, or should they act in Jesus’ words like “servants.” This question concerns every aspect of our social life. You can see it built into our material world.
    I want to begin with two things I love about San Francisco and what they say about our history. The first is Victorian houses. Between 1850 and 1900 about 40,000 of them were built in San Francisco.[i] The writer Thomas Aidala writes that the, “city was put together out of buildings that roar with fun, that never… take themselves so seriously that they forget to smile.”[ii] Victorian houses were built using the latest technology.[iii] They were thoroughly modern and made to look old. They were mostly sold to working and middle class people. Despite all the changes in real estate markets they still feel like eccentric mansions for ordinary people. Another thing I love about San Francisco are the Sutro Baths out at Lands End.[iv] Adolf Sutro loved watching the waves at Fisherman’s Cove and in 1884 he built a living 100 foot by 100 foot aquarium. By 1887 it could be emptied of 250,000 gallons of water in five minutes. In 1888 Sutro started running a steam train (that started from the corner of Presidio and California). It cost a nickel (compared to the 20 cent Southern Pacific line).[v]
    The Sutro Baths opened for bathing in 1896. At 500 feet long and 354 feet wide with six saltwater tanks, it was the largest indoor swimming complex in the world. Sutro had a passion for, “making amenities affordable for the common” person.[vi] But initially they excluded black people. After John Harris won a law suit in 1897 everyone was welcome.[vii] There could be as many as 8,000 visitors on a weekend day. The whole thing burned down in June 1966, but even the ruins are beautiful and available to everyone.
    My point is that an idea is built into this place. Even in the past we had more millionaires here than other cities, but back then people understood that radical differences in wealth destabilized community and made it harder for the ones who served others to be respected. They wanted to make the really good things in life available to everyone.
    I understand that our experience of inequality in this particular place is affected by markets, property arrangements and tax codes beyond our control. But something is missing at the heart of our experience of San Francisco today.
    The force of our gospel gets obscured because we do not know the full context of the story (which begins with Mk. 10:32). Jesus is walking along ahead of everyone. Mark explains that they are amazed and also afraid. Jesus takes his twelve closest friends aside and tells them exactly what is going to happen to him, that he will be condemned and then tortured to death. Then in the next sentence James and John, the two brothers who with Peter constitute Jesus’ inmost circle, ask to be seated next to Jesus in his “glory.” We the hearers know the irony of this request because Jesus will be crucified. Despite being plainly told they still do not understand. This scene in which Jesus 1. tells the disciples what will happen to him, 2. they misunderstand and 3. Jesus tries to teach them, is repeated three times. To further emphasize the disciple’s refusal to see, these

    • 15 min
    The Rt. Rev. Dr. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop of California

    The Rt. Rev. Dr. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop of California

    • 15 min
    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    “A capable wife who can find?... She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue” (Prov. 31).
     

    • 17 min
    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    The Very Rev. Malcolm Clemens Young, ThD

    Why We Require Vaccines

    • 16 min
    The Rev. Mary Carter Greene

    The Rev. Mary Carter Greene

    • 10 min
    The Rev. Anna Rossi

    The Rev. Anna Rossi

    To the bath and to the table, to the prayers and to the word, God calls every seeking soul. This is the English translation of an inscription found on the bell of a Danish Lutheran church in the Upper Midwest. The church was the site of important liturgical movements that place baptism at the center of a Christian life. Every seeking soul, without exception, is called beloved by God. Through the waters of baptism, the prayers of the community, the living word proclaimed in our lives, the nourishment of Communion, we can be signs of the love that calls us.

    • 13 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
25 Ratings

25 Ratings

SFBrit ,

Great to have this archive of sermons

I love having access to this sermon archive and listening to sermons I have missed or want to relive. I can not stress enough how worthwhile it is to listen to Alan Jones's past sermons. Even with 2 years since he retired they are so powerful and insightful.
Thanks Grace

davidandersonla ,

Inspirational

I live in LA and visit Grace Cathedral every time we are in the City. So glad to have access to these inspiring sermons!!! I listen in the car on the way to work every morning and it always helps me start my day with gratitude. Thank you!!!!

Abjdsf ,

Inspirational

Inspiration available at any time!
The May 26 sermon is labeled as being that of Jane Shaw; however the speaker is not Jane Shaw. Great sermon from whom?

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