Join us for online worship this Sunday, February 28, at 10:15 a.m. at

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I’m using these sermons during Lent to explore what we need to receive and what we need to take up so that our Easter celebrations will be more real, more joyful, more empowering. And I’m trying to do this in ways that help us live into the compassion of God.

But then, as he often does, Jesus comes along speaking words that challenge us, words that disturb us, words that seem anything but compassionate: “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”

It would be easier, of course, if Jesus had said something like “Read your Bible and support your church,” or “Be a good person and do good things,” or “Vote Democratic—or Republican.” But he didn’t.

He said: Deny yourself. Take up your cross. Follow.

You want to give up something? Give up yourself.

You want to receive something? Here—take up your cross.

This, of course, is the ongoing problem. Jesus often doesn’t say what we want him to say.


SCRIPTURE LESSONS: Jeremiah 15:15-21; Mark 8:31-37

SERMON       “Setting Aside and Taking Up”

The Rev. Bill Lovin preaching


ANTHEM       "O Salutaris Hostia"               Herbert Howells

                        Avery Nabholz, Wen Chin Liu, Colin Wilson, Josh Ramseyer


No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome to join us online.