Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Queerying 4th after Epiphany B

River Needham, MA queeries the Tanakh reading.

ID: God’s creation, a pink peony with a ladybug on it.

Tanakh: Deuteronomy 18:15-20
Moses continued:
The Becoming One your God will raise up for you a prophet from among your own people, like myself; hir you shall heed. This is just what you asked of the Becoming One your God at Horeb, on the day of the assembly, saying, “Let me not hear the voice of the Becoming One my God any longer or see this wondrous fire any more, lest I die.” 

Then the Becoming One said to me, “They have done well in speaking this. I will raise up a prophet for them from among their own people, like yourself: I will put My words in hirs mouth and xe will speak to them all that I command hir; and if anybody fails to heed the words xe speaks in My name, I Myself will call hir to account. But any prophet who presumes to speak in My name an oracle that I did not command hir to utter, or who speaks in the name of other gods—that prophet shall die.”

Queeries for the text:
Who are the prophets of our day?
Where are the prophetesses?
Where is Horeb?
Why did the people not want to hear from The Becoming One anymore?
Does death seem an appropriate penalty? Why or why not?

Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.
ID: a word cloud with many Spanish names in various shades of blue forms the shape of a butterfly against a dark blue background.
Gospel: Mark 1:21-28
21Jesus, Simon, Andrew, James, and John went to Capernaum; and when the sabbath came, Jesus entered the synagogue and taught. 22The crowd was astounded at his teaching, for Jesus taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. 
23Just then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, 24and he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” 
25But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” 
26And the unclean spirit, convulsing the man and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. 27They were all amazed, and they kept on asking one another, “What is this? A new teaching—with authority! This one commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.” 28At once Jesus' fame began to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee.
Queeries for the text:
What is authority? Who has it?
Why do names matter? How?
How does fame impact people?
What is unclean?
What happens on the sabbath today?
Who destroys? What is saved?
What are your queeries?

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Queerying 3rd after Epiphany B

River Needham, MA queeries the Tanakh reading.

ID: a sample of sackcloth, a light brown, loosely woven fabric against a dark background.
Tanakh: Jonah 3:1-5, 10

The word of the Becoming One came to Jonah a second time: “Go at once to Nineveh, that great city of mine, and preach to it.” Jonah went at once to Nineveh in accordance with the Becoming One’s command. Nineveh was an enormously large city a three days’ walk across. Jonah started out and made his way into the city the distance of one day’s walk, and proclaimed: “Forty days more, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” The people of Nineveh believed God. They proclaimed a fast, and great and small alike put on sackcloth.


God saw what they did, how they were turning back from their evil ways. Then, God renounced the punishment She had planned to bring upon them, and did not carry it out.

Queeries for the text:
What does God's word sound like?
What does preaching look like?
Does God speak Hebrew? What does a Hebrew command look like?
Why are cities enormously large?
What is missing from this passage?
How can we turn from our evil ways?


Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.
ID: dark skinned hands use a metal hook to mend a white net while other netting is visible in the background.

Gospel: Mark 1:14-20
14Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, 15and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the reign of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.” 
16As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea—for they were fishers. 17And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.” 18And immediately they left their nets and followed Jesus. 
19As Jesus went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. 20Immediately Jesus called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.  

Queeries for the text:
Why was John arrested?  What happened to him?
What does it look like to repent?
When a fisher catches fish, what happens to the fish?
Who are the Sons of Thunder?
How do you mend nets?
How did Zebedee feel?
What are your queeries?

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Queerying 2nd after Epiphany B

River Needham, MA queeries the Tanakh reading.

ID: in black and white, clouds fill the top of the scene. At the cloud line, an older person, read as an older man, floats in the air with arms extended. From his torso, rain flows to the earth.  The earth appears to be desert, with some smaller plants and rocks around.

Tanakh: 1 Samuel 3:1-10
Young Samuel was in the service of the Becoming One under Eli. In those days the word of the Becoming One was rare; prophecy was not widespread. One day, Eli was asleep in his usual place; his eyes had begun to fail and he could barely see. The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was sleeping in the temple of the Becoming One where the Ark of God was. 

The Becoming One called out to Samuel, and Samuel answered, “I’m coming.” He ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” 

But Eli replied, “I didn’t call you; go back to sleep.” So Samuel went back to lay down. 

Again the Becoming One called, “Samuel!” 

Samuel rose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” 

But Eli replied, “I didn’t call, my son; go back to sleep.”

—Now Samuel had not yet experienced the Becoming One; the word of the Becoming One had not yet been revealed to him.— 

The Becoming One called Samuel again, a third time, and he rose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” 

Then Eli understood that the Becoming One was calling the boy. And Eli said to Samuel, “Go lie down. If you are called again, say, ‘Speak, Becoming One, for Your servant is listening.’” And Samuel went to his place and lay down. 

The Becoming One came, and stood there, and She called as before: “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for Your servant is listening.”

Queeries for the text:
Why was the word of the Becoming One rare? Why is the word of the Becoming One rare today? Where do we receive the word of the Becoming One today?
When were they sleeping? Why?
Who can sleep in God's temple? Which communities are they permitted in?
What is the significance to being called three times?
Does the Becoming One have a body? How?

Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.
ID: a blonde barbie with hair up, tilted head, and sequin top looks toward the camera.  In yellow at the bottom of the image words say "Who the fuck are you?"

Gospel: John 1:43-51
43The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. Jesus found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” 44Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.
45Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found the one about whom Moses in the Torah and also the prophets wrote: Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” 
46Nathanael said to Philip, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” 
Philip said to Nathanael, “Come and see.” 
47When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, Jesus said of Nathanael, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” 
48Nathanael asked Jesus, “Where did you get to know me?” 
Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” 
49Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Divine One! You are the Ruler of Israel!” 
50Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” 51And Jesus said to Nathanael, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the messengers of God ascending and descending upon the Human One.”
Queeries for the text:
The next day after what?
Where do we assume goodness comes from? Can anything good come out of any nation?
Where else do fig trees show up?
How do titles convey meaning? How can they contradict meaning?
What's so great about a fig tree?
Where else do messengers of God ascend and descend?
What are your queeries?

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Queerying Baptism of Jesus B

River Needham, MA queeries the Tanakh reading.

ID: an artists rendition of a formless void, not as in earth, but as in a black hole.

Tanakh: Genesis 1:1-5

When God began to form the heavens and the earth.
The earth, unformed and empty, with darkness over the surface of the deep, felt wind from God's breath blowing over the water. 

God said: Let there be light!
And there was light.

God saw the light was good, so She pulled the light apart from the dark and separated them. 

God called the light Day, and the darkness, She called Night. And there was evening and morning, a first day.

Queeries for the text
When does God begin to form?
What does unformed and empty mean?
How are breath and wind different?
How is light formed?
Where is Day celebrated? What about the (longest) Night?


Rev. Emily E. Ewing queeries the Gospel reading.
ID: blue clouds in the sky open with a bolt of lightning and a deluge of water onto the desert.

Gospel: Mark 1:4-11

4John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to John, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. 7John proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of this one's sandals. 8I have baptized you with water; but the one to come will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

9In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10And just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. 11And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Child, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”

Queeries for the text:
Where have I read some of this before?
What sins need to be confessed?
What happens after repentance?
What do we proclaim?
What do shoes have to do with anything?
What do heavens torn apart look like?
When else are divisions torn apart?
What has Jesus done to deserve divine pleasure?
What are your queeries?