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What Will Pastors Preach about Haiti on Sunday?

Pastors across America adjust their sermons in response to the Haitian earthquake.
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Pastor Bill Douthwaite from Shepherd of the Coast Lutheran Church, Palm Coast, Florida, blogged about adjusting his sermon to address the Haitian tragedy.

I'm already prepared to speak about life issues this week…[y]et I can't pretend that people aren't thinking about the suffering in Haiti…. I also can't ignore the even greater tragedy of millions and millions of abortions over the last 36 years in America.

My plan is to still speak the truth about life, and use Haiti as an example of how sensitive we are to suffering and dying in this world. So is God. We care about life because He does.

Seattle, Washington

A pre-recorded sermon on Jesus and the Holy Spirit will play at the Ballard, Washington, Campus of Mars Hill Church as pastor Mark Driscoll and other volunteers travel to Haiti to deliver 1,000 pounds of relief supplies and other aid.

Somonauk, Illinois

The Haiti earthquake came just days before Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and the Rev. Kirk Moore at Union Congregational United Church of Christ in Somonauk, Illinois plans to connect King's message of the "fierce urgency of now" to call his congregation to respond to Haiti.

Now is not the time to argue about who drinks wine and who doesn't. Now is the time to reach out to our brothers and sisters in Haiti.

Now is not the time to debate whether it was really Jesus' mom who got things rolling for Jesus by telling him to do something. Now is the time to respond to the needs of those who have been devastated.

Now is not the time for theological debates or racial fights or saber rattling or political games. There is a fierce urgency of Now that calls us to help.

Gulf Shores, Ala.

Steven Kurtz, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Gulf Shores, Ala., will give a sermon on Jesus' miracle at the wedding in Cana, saying it is relevant, even as thousands suffer.

How can we speak of banquet wine in abundance when we see desperate people queuing for survival-water? How can we speak of divine intervention…when nature has been allowed once again to utterly ravage the lives of tens of thousands of poor people, men, women, and as we see daily, little children?

…This is not the story of a once upon a time magic trick. This is about what Jesus' coming to earth means at its deepest level. It means the whole game has changed…. [W]hen we hear his words…we respond with the same extravagance to the hurting, bleeding people around us.

We are the ones with the wine of the kingdom, bursting from our wine-sacks. The people of Haiti right now are the victims on the side of the road, bleeding, needing help. [T]ake out that wine and pour it on the hurting places, bringing healing and relief.

January/February
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