In preparation for services beginning at the Andover campus in the fall, I have been working on a set of sermon series. Part of my study has been looking at lectionary passages. The lectionary is a set of weekly readings (normally 4) that go along with the Christian calendar. The lectionary is set on a three year cycle so that you get through all four gospels in that time frame. The gospel of John is used each Eastertide season while the other three are used during the rest of the year on a rotating basis.
Many faith communities use the lectionary as their Sunday morning worship texts because they tend to follow the Christian year so closely and because they provide a well-rounded approach to reading Scripture. You truly get a flavor from the entirety of Scripture and are taken to some places that you might not naturally go.
Reading the lectionary texts during the week has been an uplifting experience. (I can’t take credit for this, Paul Brunstetter, our Senior Pastor is the one who set me on this path of reading the lectionary texts as devotional material.) What has been powerful is to know that I stand in a long line of members of faith who have been viewing these sacred texts and finding strength, insight, and transformation from them. God has spoken down through history up to today through the reality announced in the passages. Reading a common text has opened my eyes to the possibilities of community building through a common experience of coming face-to-face with God’s Holy Word.
For your convenience, I have included a link to the lectionary provided by the Global Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church. If you are so inclined, why don’t we read the passages together over the summer months. I will attempt to comment on them as we go and provide a forum for us to dialogue about the texts.