Easter 3 (Misericordias Domini), 2017
John 10:11-16; Psalm 23
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt

On this day in the Church Year, I usually teach that the Gospel lesson is a rebuke to pastors. Last week, Jesus sends the apostles to forgive and remit sin. And that’s well and good.

This week, to keep pastors humble, Jesus reminds us all that He is the good shepherd. Those are His words.

Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd…” (John 10:11).

In the Vulgate, the Latin translation of the Bible used in the Church for hundreds of years, that’s: “Ego sum pastor bonus.” Pastor is the Latin word for shepherd, so Jesus says, with Latin in mind, “I am the good pastor.”

I am not the good pastor.

Some days, I’m not even a good pastor.

If you catch me on a bad day, I’m truly sorry.

If you catch me on a good day, remember that for the rest of your life, please.

So, me, personally, and us all—we need the comfort that our Lord gives us.

Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd…” (John 10:11).


Misericordias Domini—Easter 3, 2016
John 10:11-16
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt

Last week, we looked at the institution of the Office of the Holy Ministry and how God, desiring you to receive the peace that Christ’s sacrifice and death earned, how God sends pastors to forgive sin.

That’s all right and good, but…

Lest pastors get the wrong idea about themselves, Jesus says today: “I am the good shepherd…” (more…)

Quasimodo Geniti—Easter 2 Sermon, 2017
John 20:19-31
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt

What has God done with your sin?

He has forgiven it in receiving and accepting the all-availing sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.

How, though, does God desire for you to receive that forgiveness?

In the gospel according to St. John, in how many verses does the evangelist use the word “forgive”?

What would you guess?


The Vigil of Easter, 2017
Chrysostom (347-407 AD)

Are there any who are devout lovers of God? Let them enjoy this beautiful bright festival!

Are there any who are grateful servants?

Let them rejoice and enter into the joy of their Lord!

Are there any weary from fasting?

Let them now receive their due!


Good Friday, 2017
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt

St. Paul says: “We preach Christ crucified” (1 Cor. 1:23).

And even more to the point: “I have determined to know nothing among you but Christ and Him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2).

The Church’s sermon is Christ and Him crucified.

We preach Christ crucified.


Maundy Thursday, 2017
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt
John 13:1-15

Calling today Maundy Thursday never made much sense to me.

You hear it called “Maunday Thursday,” but it’s Maundy Thursday. So, I was always confused about that.

But, adding to my confusion, is that this is the day of Holy Week when Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper.


Palm Sunday Sermon, 2017
Matthew 21:1-9
Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt

What do you want? If you made a list, what would be on it?

Some people aim low, wanting a nap.

Some people aim a bit higher, wanting good news from the doctor, food on the table, safety and peace at home, and an early and warm spring.

All of those are good wants. But are those things what you truly need?