Saturday, March 31, 2018

Great Sunday

Let's re-name Easter Sunday GREAT SUNDAY.

Good Friday

I went to church with a friend: Formal Anglican Holy Communion prayer book service with choir. Wonderful!

Being Good Friday it was quiet, understated and solemn. Movingly reflective.

The choir and ministers entered in silence. No flowers in the auditorium or sanctuary. Sombre and arresting.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

The woman from nowhere

I'm sick.

Between hospital sessions I was in a cafe and after I'd poured by tea, an elderly woman walked in. Saw the bandage on my arm and asked in a completely confident, outspoken and genuine way what happened to me. I told her that it was a PICC line for a serious illness.

She asked to pray for me. I consented.

She prayed. She left. Didn't buy anything.

As I was driven back to the hospital she was crossing the street and looked at me; I waved.

I went goosebumps.

Is this how angels operate?

Monday, March 26, 2018

Young Sheldon rebaked

In a scene in the new Young Sheldon show (about a precocious 9 year old genius) the mother asks who will come to church with her. Sheldon replies that he will. His sister points out that he doesn't believe in God. Charmingly he retorts 'but I believe in mum'.

If I'd be scripting:

Sheldon: "I will"

Sheldon's sister: "I don't believe in God'

Sheldon: "Oh, so you think material can explain anything of human interest?"

But then, I'm not a script writer, don't work for TV, and am never asked by producers....although I did some radio work with a film producer once upon a time.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Christian school: the mission

On the radio today I heard an advert for a Christian school. From what the advert said, I figured the mission of a 'Christian' school:
  1. Cut your children off from contact with those yet to hear the gospel
  2. Prevent your children from influencing those outside the church
  3. Stop you, the parents from getting to know, love and communicate the love of Christ to non-Christians
  4. Reinforce the misconception that Christians are afraid of the world
  5. Prevent opportunities for you to powerfully dispel misconceptions about Christ, his church and the world. 
  6. Allow you to avoid opportunities to join committees of influence in public schools.
 All round win-win for one's own self-indulgence.

I can see the competition Christian schools are mounting with the enclosed order of Poor Clares.

Sunday, March 18, 2018


This morning's sermon included the reading of this portion of an article in yesterday's Good Weekend:

Sunday, March 11, 2018


This mornings quite wonderful sermon (it had to be, Schillebeeckx was quoted, although no caveats on his rampant idealism) on Colossians 1:15-20, mentioned that because of the God being creator that Christians are 'deep ecologists'. A distinction should have been drawn between the stewardship of the creation mandate, and the anti-people propaganda and deprivation of modern environmento-paganism.

It is worth observing that 'nature' has been better treated, typically, in cultures subject to long Christian influence than others, reaching back centuries.

For example the Anglican Book of Common Prayer from 1549 contained the canticle Benedicite, Omnia Opera, which lauds the natural world.

Nothing new here, folks. Just move along.

Friday, March 9, 2018


In the small group I am part of we are working through Simply Christian by N. T. Wright. We watch a video by Wright, which he cutely calls a 'lesson', then we discuss using the workbook we've been given.

Last week's was on relationships and beauty as echos of our creator.

We enthusiastically discussed relationships. Enthusiasm slowed at 'beauty'.

Sure, we all got on board 'natural' beauty. I asked about beauty in our church services. I could see the question marks floating over everyone's head.

No idea!

Some traditions recognise and enjoy beauty in worship as we enjoy the best of human creativity as we collectively turn our attention to our lord. Others, it appears, do not.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Communion done well

Being as I attend a Baptist church, but had faith renewed in an Anglo-Catholic one, I find the Baptist approach to communion anemic to say the best.

Today that changed.

We had three communion 'stations' around our auditorium, with people able to remain seated for a waiter service.

I liked the go to station method. It felt like a community joined in communion. Much good.

The servers were able to pray for people's needs, briefly, or simply pray a blessing on those who sought it. We haven't figured out an elegant way to seek prayer, but I'm sure that will come.