Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Silent Sermon

St. Francis and the Crucified Christ

Thank you Fr. Vince I.

Sometimes, the best sermon is a silent sermon. St. Francis reminds us: Preach the Gospel, sometimes use words.

“It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.” -Saint Francis

A member of a certain church, who previously had been attending services regularly, suddenly stopped coming to church. After a few weeks, the Pastor decided to visit.

The Pastor found the man at home alone, sitting before a blazing fire.

Guessing the reason for his Pastor's visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a comfortable chair near the fireplace and waited. The pastor made himself at home but said nothing. In the grave silence, he contemplated the dance of the flames around the burning logs. After some minutes, the Pastor took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth all alone.

Then he sat back in his chair, still silent. The host watched all this in quiet contemplation. As the one lone ember's flame flickered and diminished, there was a momentary glow and then its fire was no more. Soon it was cold and lifeless. The Pastor glanced at his watch and realized it was time to leave, he slowly stood up, picked up the cold, dead ember and placed it back in the middle of the fire. Immediately it began to glow, once more with the light and warmth of the burning coals around it.

As the Pastor reached the door to leave, his host said with a tear running down his cheek, "Thank you so much for your visit and especially for the fiery sermon. I shall be back in church next Sunday."

We live in a world today which tries to say too much with too little. Consequently, few listen. Sometimes the best sermons are the ones left unspoken.

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A Bit of the Blarney said...

Wow!!! What a wonderful illustration about "Body of Christ." Thank you! Cathy

Unknown said...

What a beautiful story! I love it! Thank you for posting this! This was just what I needed to hear! You are an inspiration!:)

EC Gefroh said...

Cathy and John, glad you enjoyed reading it.

God bless you both.

Tracy said...

How very true Esther, thank you so much for sharing this, just what I needed to read.

EC Gefroh said...

So glad to hear that Tracy.