Sunday Talks

Dismantling Patriarchy

with Rev. Clay Nelson

Watch

Listen

or download the MP3

Read below, or download the PDF

Clay Nelson © 14th October 2018

A friend asked what I was preaching on this week. I told him “Dismantling Patriarchy.” He gave me an empathetic chuckle, “Well, good luck with that.”

I’m not sure what he meant by that. Easy peasy. It has only been around for the last 11,700 years of the earth’s history. Lots has changed since it took hold during the Neolithic age, sometimes called the new stone age. The Bronze age had not even happened yet. Continue reading Dismantling Patriarchy

It’s time to do the Hokey Tokey

with Rev. Clay Nelson

Watch

Listen

or download the MP3

Read below, or download the PDF

Clay Nelson © 7th October 2018

One of the challenges I face in selecting sermon topics is trying to find something new where I can venture into uncharted territory. So far it has been to no avail. The Teacher in Ecclesiastes was right when he said, “There is nothing new under the sun.” But ever hopeful I tried again this week. I bet no one has ever tried to find a sermon in the Hokey Pokey, or the Hokey Tokey as it is called in New Zealand. I guess the name was already taken for an ice cream. But a quick search of the interwebs revealed that any number of preachers from various faiths had given it a go. Continue reading It’s time to do the Hokey Tokey

Telling your story, fact or fiction

with Rev. Clay Nelson

Watch

Listen

or download the MP3

Read below, or download the PDF

Clay Nelson © 30th September 2018

On Friday, while trying to get a handle on how best to approach the topic of “Telling your story, fact or fiction,” I was given a riveting example.

Like millions around the world, I was caught up in the drama of Dr Christine Blasey Ford telling her story to the Senate Judiciary Committee of being sexually assaulted by President Trump’s nominee for the United States Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh. I was deeply moved by her testimony and the price she was willing to pay to tell her story, even though the outcome of a questionable process had been fore-ordained by the Republican majority since day one. What good will telling her story do? some may ask. She has received death-threats, been forced from her home, been subject to cruel and unsubstantiated character assassination, and much more for having done so. No matter what the ultimate vote on Kavanaugh is, the prevalence of sexual assault has been exposed once again. The reasons for it having been under-reported in a patriarchal, misogynist society have been made prominently self-evident. And most importantly, it has given courage to a large number of women to now tell their story anyway. Telling your story can be liberating, for yourself, for others and for the common good. It can bring about change. Continue reading Telling your story, fact or fiction

Does New Zealand put too many people into jail?

with David Hines

Watch

Listen

or download the MP3

Read below, or download the PDF

David Hines © 23rd September 2018.

The Unitarian Universalist covenant on the wall includes:

the goal of world community, with peace, liberty and justice for all.

but there is a conflict there: If there’s justice for all, doesn’t that mean some people will have to be punished, with a bottom line punishment of jail. But if some have to go to jail that means that there would not be liberty for all. And our goal would be nonsense? Continue reading Does New Zealand put too many people into jail?

Seeking Shalom: An ancient spiritual quest

with Rev. Clay Nelson

Watch

Listen

or download the MP3

Read below, or download the PDF

Clay Nelson © 16th November 2018

I recently finished a fantasy novel. I used to think the genre met my needs for escape literature. Sometimes it does but often it invites me into nearly obsessive theological reflection. This particular novel did the latter. It had the prerequisite number of dragons, warlocks, mythical characters to capture my imagination. There were super villains and great heroes. As the novelist is a woman, there were at least as many women heroes as men — a refreshing change. There was another unexpected feature to the characters. The heroes were flawed and some had done horrible deeds in their past. The villains, on the other hand, were at times unexpectedly noble and self-sacrificing. Continue reading Seeking Shalom: An ancient spiritual quest