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Musings from the High Desert

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United States

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English

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Episodes

Who Is My Neighbor?

11/14/2018
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Fr Gabriel offers a look at the trajectory - not always positive - of the interpretation of this parable, and goes on to explore the initial conversation between the lawyer and Jesus. The final question is how can we respond to the message of this parable in our time? (Luke 10:25-37)

Duration:00:11:01

Being Gathered Up Together in Christ

11/7/2018
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Fr. Gabriel Rochelle looks at the passage for this Sunday's Epistle (Pentecost 23) in the context of the whole of the letter, with side notes to Romans 9-11 and Galatians. Paul's emphasis is consistent: we are saved by God's Grace in order that we might be reconciled with others, particularly our Jewish brothers and sisters, and that we might do works of compassion and helpfulness in the world. (Ephesians 2:1-10)

Duration:00:08:44

On the Pathway to Becoming Fully Alive

10/29/2018
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Fr. Gabriel Rochelle considers the heart of the Christian message today in relation to both the Gerasene demoniac's tale and Paul's approach to the faith in Galatians. (Galatians and Luke 8)

Duration:00:09:35

The Sower and the Sunday of Fathers of the 7th Council

10/24/2018
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Deacon Ted Brinegar uses the mash-up between the parable of the Sower and the text from St John's Gospel in this Sunday to bring us a clear message about the place of icons in the growth of our faith.

Duration:00:08:48

The Foolish Galatians

10/22/2018
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St. Paul comes off the blocks with a powerful message for the "foolish Galatians." There's a movement in the community to underwrite forms of legalism that would compromise the central message of freedom in the Gospel of Christ. Paul addresses these concerns and offers us light for our way today. (Galatians 1)

Duration:00:12:53

Being Raised to Life

10/18/2018
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Guest Preacher: Fr Timothy Cremeens (Wilkes-Barre PA) reflects on the raising of the widow of Nain's son in relation to our need for "raising" in this life. (St Luke 7:11-16)

Duration:00:17:00

God’s Strength and Our Weakness

10/15/2018
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Fr Gabriel ties together Paul's note about "God's strength is made perfect (whole) in weakness" to his note about the sorrow or grief which is godly and worldly in Chapter 7. Together these make a whole thought for Paul, applicable to us today. (II Corinthians 12:9, 7:10-12)

Duration:00:07:31

Working the Good

10/12/2018
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This week's gospel reveals a peculiar approach to the mission and message of Jesus Christ, an approach different from the other Gospels. Luke, writing to an audience primarily made up of Greeks and Romans, emphasizes the motif of benefaction, of "working the good," that was characteristic of Greco-Roman society in the form of the Benefactor. Luke applies this motif to both God the Father and to Christ himself, and then turns that spotlight on us. (Luke 6:31-36)

Duration:00:07:43

What Creates Character?

10/9/2018
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The passage spins out into a discussion of approaches to ethics characteristic of the time of St. Paul. Do we focus on agency, that is the character and virtue of the person who acts, or do we focus on action as creating character? This debate when on in the time of Jesus and Paul, and it continues today of course. Listen in as Fr Gabriel tries to show that the New Testament witness merges these two approaches or focal points into a new third focus that blends both agency and action,...

Duration:00:09:09

Ministers of Reconciliation

9/17/2018
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Paul's appeal to the Corinthians - and to us today - is grounded in a passage from Isaiah 49, which in turn is grounded in the idea that Cyrus, King of Persia, is a "messiah" for the Israelites in exile in Babylon. Paul moves this idea forward to own time and we see how it applies to us today. Listen in. (II Corinthians 6:1-3)

Duration:00:07:10

Treasures in Earthen Vessels

9/10/2018
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This is the week for that lesson from Second Corinthians where Paul talks about "treasures in earthen vessels." Usually and ultimately we think of this passage meaning that, despite the frailty and brokenness of our lives, grace can still shine through. But there are a few other ways to look at the passage, according to early writers like Origen and St. Jerome.

Duration:00:06:51

The Wedding Guests and Garment

9/2/2018
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This parable has some harsh contents, stemming in part from the hyperbole of ancient storytellers, but there are several lessons below that violent surface we need to pay attention to today. Come and work through the invitation to the banquet and hear about the person who comes with no visible wedding garment.

Duration:00:09:42

The Wicked Vinedresser - Part 2

8/27/2018
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A little lesson in literary forms this week; we need to distinguish between allegory and parable, particularly as used by Jesus of Nazareth. This allegory may stem from the early church, according to some commentators, but there's every reason to think that Jesus said it. The ultimate question is, what does it mean for us and how are we to take it, since it is historically located in his time? Listen in with Fr. Gabriel Rochelle.

Duration:00:11:33

The Rich Young Man

8/22/2018
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This text is familiar because we hear it each year and it is so striking. In it the young man rehearses the list of commandments that any convert might have followed (hence the text has an eye to the Gentile world), but more than this it shows how Jesus drives deeply to the heart of the separation between humanity and God, found in the distractions that make us focus on penultimate things. Listen in.

Duration:00:09:03

The Wicked Vinedresser - Part 1

8/14/2018
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The parable is perhaps misnamed since the entire setup of chapter eighteen in Matthew's Gospel has to do with forgiveness and humility. The parable might best be understood as an extended commentary on the saying in our Lord's prayer, properly translated "forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors." But the next question is, how do we get to that place where we can forgive? Listen in with Fr. Gabriel Rochelle.

Duration:00:08:45

The Weak and the Strong

7/16/2018
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Fr Gabriel brings a slightly new take on the "weak" and the "strong" in Romans 15, and how this connects to Paul's concern for Jewish Christians and Jewish people who have not come to confidence in Christ as Messiah. (Romans 15-13)

Duration:00:09:01

Serving in Love

7/12/2018
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At the Divine Liturgy, Fr Gabriel continues with a consideration of Paul's injunction to use our gifts in a spirit of love. (Romans 12:6-12 and following)

Duration:00:12:50

Living as Sacrifice

7/10/2018
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This passage is so extraordinary in Paul's writings that we have to cover most of the chapter this week. At Vespers, Fr Gabriel, after reviewing the preceding chapters, considered verses 1-5, about presenting our bodies as a living sacrifice. (Romans 12:1-5)

Duration:00:10:37

The Spirit and Content of Fasting

7/2/2018
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As we end the Apostles' Fast, Fr Gabriel looks at a quintessential passage from the third and final section of the second prophet known as Isaiah. As the people prepare to return from captivity, in Babylon under the amnesty granted by King Cyrus of Persia, the prophet expresses both high expectation and hope for the future, but issues a caution about conduct that contradicts the content and spirit of fasting. The caution continues into our day. Listen in. (Isaiah 58:3-12)

Duration:00:11:02

The Meaning of Mammon

6/18/2018
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In this Gospel from Matthew, Jesus lays down the gauntlet: you have to serve either God or mammon. But what is mammon, anyway? Join in as Fr Gabriel explores the meaning of this text in its time and for our lives today, with the call to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. (Matthew 6:22-33)

Duration:00:12:50