I collaborated on the following sermon with my friend, Darryl Schafer (we preached our own versions of it at our respective churches). You can listen to the full audio here, or, if you’re just interested in the string of text messages we exchanged that gave birth to the sermon, here are a few of them:
Mary, did you know that your son would be a champion of the poor, only to see so many of his followers 2,000 years later blame, victimize, and dehumanize the poor?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy would be called the Prince of Peace, yet countless wars would be waged in his name?
Mary, did you know that even though your son treated women as equals it would only take two generations for those following in his name to reestablish patriarchal gender norms?
Mary, did you know that followers of your son would deny basic human rights to others in the name of your son?
Mary, did you know that your son would be brutally tortured by state powers and that, 2,000 years later, most of his followers would turn a blind eye to the evils of torture still done by state powers?
Mary, did you know that those dipped in the fount of baptism in your son’s name would readily sanction dipping the heads of others into the waters of torture?
Mary, did you know that if your family tried to escape Herod’s violence by crossing our border today that most of your son’s followers, at least according to the statistics, would want to send all of you back?
Mary, did you know that if your son earned an executive job in America many would assume he was nothing more than an affirmative action hire?
Mary, did you know that the color of your son’s skin would make him more than twice as likely to serve time in an American prison today?
Mary, when you held your baby boy in your arms, did you know that he would end up becoming one more brown child unjustly killed by state powers?
Mary, did you know that that while your son was hanging on the cross that the cause of his death was suffocation? He could not breathe.
Audio of full sermon: