Salt and Light

Homily preached by the Rev. James La Macchia
Trinity Parish of Newton Centre
February 5, 2017
The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany – Year A

Isaiah 58:1-12
Psalm 112:1-10
1 Corinthians 2:1-16
Matthew 5:13-20

My Friends:

annex20-20davis20bette20all20about20eve_nrfpt_02It’s not very often that our popular culture provides us with a touchstone for understanding the Gospels.  As I prayed these propers in preparation for today’s homily, however, I thought of the classic film starring Bette Davis, “All about Eve.”  There is a marvelous scene in the movie when the upstart actress Eve Harrington unexpectedly stands in for the famous and renowned actress Margot Channing, played by Bette Davis, who is late for a dress rehearsal of her latest Broadway play.  The conniving Eve has invited the cynical and debonair theater critic, appropriately named Addison DeWitt, from the New York Times to witness her rehearsal performance.  He is appropriately impressed by her acting and writes in his review that the ingénue Eve is all “fire and light.”  After reading the review, in which the acerbic critic is also careful to remind his readers of Ms. Channing’s advancing years, Bette Davis’ character grouses, “Fire and Light, Fire and Light.  What am I, just an old kazoo and sparklers?” Continue reading

Richness Toward God

Homily preached by the Rev. James La Macchia
Trinity Parish of Newton Centre
July 31, 2016
The Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost – Proper 13C

Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23
Psalm 49: 1-11
Colossians 3:1-11
Luke 12: 13-21

My Friends:

Almost four years after my father’s death, I still receive very vivid reminders of one of the central truths of both the human condition and the Gospel of Jesus Christ:  “You can’t take anything with you” or—as a beloved friend once said shortly before his death, “I have never seen a hearse with a U-Haul attached to it.”  As my mother and I continue to sort through so many of my father’s things, all carefully labeled, stored, and left behind—many of them for a future that never came—we have had a very sobering reminder that our only real legacy is our character and the good deeds that we have done or failed to do in our short time here on this earth.  Our spirit is all that follows us into the “life of the world to come” as we await the final consummation of all things mortal at the “resurrection of the dead”, when “Christ is all and in all,” according to St. Paul.   Even Jesus didn’t manage to leave this world without first dying, and, in this world of uncertainty, there is one thing of which I am quite sure:  none of us gathered here this morning will manage to do so either. Continue reading