Progressive Faith Sermons - Dr. Roger Ray

This part 1 of a two-part series on philanthropy. Today we consider the ways that charitable foundations can be twisted into being tax loopholes for the super-rich while still allowing the wealthy to use 95% of the foundation’s holdings to invest in stocks that profit them personally. Part 2 will be about the benefits of philanthropy which can be huge, but the downside of our tax structure that punishes people for being poor and rewards people for being rich deserves our attention.

Direct download: 20230625_Sermon.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

We get lots of cultural signals that our personal worth goes down with each birthday. Many feel pressured to choose extreme measures to deny the reality of the passing of time, but rather than grieving over what age takes away from us, maybe we can spend some time considering what gifts can come with old age? The British philosopher, Bertrand Russell, praised the advantages of getting older, especially in making a hard exit from the ego driven competition of our younger years. We can be liberated in our senior years to enjoy a more whole life that is free of the anxiety we may feel about such things as appearance and focus more on wisdom.

Direct download: 20230618_Sermon.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Week after week, we turn our attention to injustice, violence, and oppression, so that we can encourage one another to not stand idly by. But as we face all this suffering, there is also that nagging question: How can we humans be so wonderful and horrible at the same time? So generous and compassionate on the one hand and so cruel and violent on the other? By reflecting on our own experiences and listening to the emerging research on violence and empathy, we can make decisions that build resources, cultivate community, and help make wellbeing, in ourselves and in society, available to all.

Direct download: 20230611_Sermon.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

In May, the Biden Administration announced a new border plan, which turns out to be more of the same, including recycling failed and dangerous policies. Even Federal asylum officers have called the new plan “inconsistent with the asylum law enacted by Congress, the treaties the United States has ratified, and our country’s moral fabric and longstanding tradition of providing safe haven to the persecuted.” We must continue to speak out against continued abuses and injustices against migrants, and to act in ways that embody and insist on the humanity, safety, and wellbeing of all – including and especially vulnerable asylum seekers and refugees.

Direct download: 20230604_Sermon.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT