Edna Lister’s Sermons

What makes a sermon great? Theologians argue the question, seminaries teach courses on how to write and deliver one, but only the listener knows when a sermon hits the mark. Those who came to “hear the word of the Lord” from Edna Lister lavishly praised her efforts, saying, “Oh, what a sermon! I’ve never heard the like!” Or “Now, that was a sermon!” How did her sermons manage to leave such an indelible mark on those who heard them? She ascended to heights of such joy that her message was undiluted, straight from the Source. Often shocking in their richness and simplicity, you may best savor these sermons and outlines by reading them slowly or aloud. Her lectures are just as rich in subject and detail, evoking the memory of the academy, portico and peristyle, the oak groves, plane trees and cypress of ancient Greece. Her topics are varied and unusual; her insights illuminating.
  We offer this collection of sermons and Bible interpretations based on the written outlines Edna Lister created, and on transcripts of her students’ notes wherever possible. We have placed her outlines of sermons first on a given date, since they are often so different from students’ notes of what she actually delivered. While the outlines may seem “sparse,” imagine what that sermon was really like. Ponder as you read, and you may “tune in” the living record eternally stored in divine Mind.

—Linda Mihalic

Sermons 1930s

Sermons 1930
Sermons 1933
Sermons 1934
Sermons 1935
Sermons 1936
Sermons 1937
Sermons 1938
Sermons 1939 » Coming soon »

Sermons 1940s

Sermons 1940
Sermons 1941
Sermons 1942
Sermons 1943
Sermons 1944
Sermons 1945
Sermons 1946
Sermons 1947
Sermons 1948
Sermons 1949

Sermons 1950s

Sermons 1950
Sermons 1951
Sermons 1952
Sermons 1953
Sermons 1954
Sermons 1955, I
Sermons 1955, II
Sermons 1955, III
Sermons 1956, I
Sermons 1956, II
Sermons 1956, III
Sermons 1957
Sermons 1958, I
Sermons 1958, II
Sermons 1959, I
Sermons 1959, II

Sermons 1960, I
Sermons 1960, II
Sermons 1961, I
Sermons 1961, II
Sermons 1962, I
Sermons 1962, II
Sermons 1963, I
Sermons 1963, II
Sermons 1964, I
Sermons 1964, II
Sermons 1965, I
Sermons 1965, II
Sermons 1966, I.
Sermons 1966, II
Sermons 1967, I
Sermons 1967, II
Sermons 1968, I
Sermons 1968, II
Sermons 1969

Sermons 1970s

Sermons 1970, I
Sermons 1970, II
Sermons 1971

Vivere ut Gaudium

Edna Miriam Lister ascended to the Father August 3, 1971.

Crossing the Bar1

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Sunset and evening star,
  And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
  When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
  Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
  Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
  And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
  When I embark;

For tho' from out our bourne of Time and Place
  The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
  When I have crost the bar.

1^The sandbar that usually separates shallower coastal waters from the open sea.


Edna Miriam Lister
1884 – 1971
The original Christian Pioneering Mystic,
Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister


Her students’ notes are of inestimable value in publishing Edna Lister’s sermons, which were not recorded. Our gratitude and thanks to the following for their faithful attendance and note-taking: Kay Wilder Abstein, Dorothy Allen, Elizabeth Barnes, Molly Doan Bellamy, Edna Bender, Susan Bender, Edith Bruce, L. Burnett, Ethel Call, Ferne Chapman, Victor and Ruth Bender Collord, Clara El Damm, Joan Bender Dinse, Margaret Pratt Doan, Alfhild Graham, Theresa Grosscurth, Ruth Johnson, Lillian Kondash, Michael Kuzmic, Lotus Judson Landis, William R. Mitchell, Marjorie Muehlhauser, Jean Metzger, Linda Hildebrand Mihalic, Eunice Morrison, Edward Pembroke, Darcea Schiesl, Lucille Smith, Wilhelmina Smith, Virginia Sypher, Florence Waldorf, Clarissa A. Watkins, Irene White, Ross and Virginia Whitehead, and May Wilder.

Many thanks to our proofreaders: Christi Carlson, Sherry Abstein Gordon, Sandra L. Gustavson, Barbara Imboden Martien, David P. Mihalic, Roberta Parsons, Mona Rainwater, Judith Weiss, and M. C. Whyman.