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John E. Sumwalt

John E. Sumwalt is the lead pastor of Wauwatosa Avenue United Methodist Church in suburban Milwaukee and the author of nine books, to be released by CSS in 2007. John and his wife, Jo Perry-Sumwalt, served for three years as co-editors of StoryShare. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary (UDTS), Sumwalt received the Herbert Manning Jr. award for parish ministry from UDTS in 1997.
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Saved -- Colossians 3:12-17 -- John E. Sumwalt, Cheryl Kirking -- First Sunday after Christmas Day - C -- 2003
"I may have a story for your book, Cheryl." I had just finished presenting at a women's event, and h
A New Creation -- 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 -- John E. Sumwalt, Debi Lyerly Lawson -- Fourth Sunday in Lent - C -- 2003
I cannot remember a time when God wasn't the source of all that I am.
A Christmas Story From Cambodia -- Titus 2:11-14 -- John E. Sumwalt, Patricia Lyon -- The Nativity of our Lord - C -- 2003
I wondered if the village folk ever had potlucks like the Methodists back home.
Recovered Memory -- Isaiah 43:16-21 -- John E. Sumwalt, Bruce Stunkard -- Fifth Sunday in Lent - C -- 2003
I was a male glossophobiac. An avoider of spotlights. Stage frightened.
An Unlikely Angel -- Luke 2:1-20 -- John E. Sumwalt, David Michael Smith -- 2003
He staggered in fifteen minutes after the traditional holiday hymn sing had begun, plopping with a t
Maundy Thursday Visions -- John 13:1-17, 31b-35 -- John E. Sumwalt, Lisa Lancaster -- Maundy Thursday - C -- 2003
In 1985, I was struggling deeply with a very painful friendship.
A Single Drop Of Blood -- Luke 22:14--23:56 -- John E. Sumwalt, Wayne Frank -- Passion Sunday - C -- 2003
I was first elected as an Alderman on Milwaukee's south side after a special election in 1973.
A Day Of Pentecost -- Acts 2:1-21 -- John E. Sumwalt, Ellen Sherry -- Day of Pentecost - C -- 2003
I was raised in the Congregational Church.
Steadfast Love -- Psalm 85 -- John E. Sumwalt, Christal Bindrich -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - C -- 2003
My brother died on March 15, 2001, at the age of 56.
The Aqueduct -- Isaiah 43:18-25 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Epiphany 7 | Ordinary Time 7 - B -- 1996
Years ago there was an aqueduct that brought fresh water into the center of the village, all the way
Father Good -- Mark 10:17-31 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 23 | Ordinary Time 28 - B -- 1996
They called him Father Good, though he was not ordained and he had no natural children.
Fearless Freddie -- Psalm 25:1-10 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- First Sunday in Lent - B -- 1996
Once upon a time there was a boy known as Fearless Freddie.
Frog Song -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 24 | Ordinary Time 29 - B -- 1996
"We will hear citizens' comments now," the Mayor announced.
Afflicted -- Psalm 22:23-31 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Second Sunday in Lent - B -- 1996
There was once a little boy whose most prized possession was a light blue cat's-eye crystal marble.
You Shall Not Murder -- Exodus 20:1-17 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Third Sunday in Lent - B -- 1996
There was once a man who was an active proponent of capital punishment.
Will Work For Food -- Mark 10:46-52< -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 25 | Ordinary Time 30 - B -- 1996
A well-known politician came into a large American city one day to speak at a political rally.
Dog Days Of The Soul -- John 3:14-21 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Fourth Sunday in Lent - B -- 1996

Laying Down The Law -- Deuteronomy 6:1-9; Hebrews 9:11-14 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 26 | Ordinary Time 31 - B -- 1996
Awards Sunday was the biggest annual event at Calvary Church.
The Conversion -- Jeremiah 31:31-34 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Fifth Sunday in Lent - B -- 1996
She hadn't intended to speak.
Heads Will Roll -- Mark 6:14-29, Amos 7:7-15 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 10 | Ordinary Time 15 - B -- 1996
Both management and union leaders were angry with Amos Dresser.
The Anointing -- John 12:12-16 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Passion Sunday - B -- 1996
Marilyn came slowly down the long stairs of her sister Margaret's big brick house in the suburbs of
Giving All -- Mark 12:38-44 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 27 | Ordinary Time 32 - B -- 1996
Gerald Fitzgerald was the biggest giver at First Redeemer Church.
Prejudice, Once Removed: The Larry Wasson Story -- Acts 2:1-21 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Day of Pentecost - B -- 1996
The gray-haired man cleared his throat and stood before the circle of his peers, gathered to share t
The Lord Always Before Me: Lavinda's Christmas Letter -- Psalm 16 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- Proper 28 | Ordinary Time 33 - B -- 1996
Christmas, 1979

Dear Ones:

Painful Waiting -- Isaiah 64:1-9 -- John E. Sumwalt, Jo Perry-sumwalt -- First Sunday of Advent - B -- 1996
The pain was unbearable!

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The Immediate Word

Mary Austin
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George Reed
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Christopher Keating
Bethany Peerbolte
Thomas Willadsen
For July 22, 2018:
  • Is There An App for That? by Mary Austin -- If only there were an app to bring people together. Citizen vs. non-citizen. White vs. black. Men vs. women. Straight vs. gay. Our divisions are deep, and we need an app -- or a Redeemer.


Frank Ramirez
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“Why We Need Shepherds” by Frank Rairez
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Why We Need Shepherds
by Frank Ramirez
Jeremiah 23:1-6, Psalm 23

I will raise up shepherds over them who will shepherd them, and they shall not fear any longer, or be dismayed, nor shall any be missing, says the LORD. (Jeremiah 31:4)


Arley K. Fadness
“...all who touched it were healed...” (v. 56b)

Good morning dear children,

Can you remember a time when you were mad? (children respond) Can you remember a time when you were sad? (children respond) Can you recall a time when you were glad? (children respond) It's okay to have mad, sad, and glad feelings from time to time.

Today I want to tell you about a sad time and a glad time in the Bible.

Emphasis Preaching Journal

Frank Ramirez
Bob Ove
Mark Ellingsen
Bonnie Bates
Bill Thomas
2 Samuel 7:1-14a & Psalm 89:20-37
In this passage of Samuel, it appears David is feeling guilty for the gifts he has received. A palace has been provided for him, but the Ark of the Covenant, the casket for the stone tablets of the Law, the presence of the Holy amid the people is still in a tent. David wants to build a temple to the Lord, a great palace of worship where the people can worship God. But that is not God’s plan. David’s offspring may build the Temple but for now God is pleased to be amid the people; no temple or palace is needed.
Mark Ellingsen
This is a Sunday for celebrating that All are One.

2 Samuel 7:1-4a

The Village Shepherd

Janice B. Scott
I recently watched a documentary of Prince William's life, made to celebrate his twenty-first birthday, his final coming of age. Soon after their mother died, both the princes went with their father to Canada, where the young Prince William had a rapturous reception from thousands of screaming teenage girls.

Although the young prince was very pleasant and polite to all the onlookers, as soon as he escaped the public gaze by going indoors, according to the documentary he said, "Phew! Thank goodness that's over!"


David G. Rogne
The Superintendent of Schools was having a bad year. Some contentious issues were being dealt with by the school board. One Sunday, during the coffee hour after church, I heard the Superintendent say in a particularly loud voice, "For crying out loud, it's my day of rest, too!" Someone had approached him about a concern in the school district, and he felt that there was no place he could go to get away from it. I learned right then not to approach people about business matters when they are not on duty.

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