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Sermons

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Reflections of a Lay Pastor:  May 26th 2019: Climate Emergency

It would seem that over the last few weeks, every lectionary has recorded the huge changes that take place when people accept the Love of God into their lives, with all that entails.  Today the story is of a man, crippled from birth, who discovers the ability to walk at Jesus’ command.  The response of [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor:May 19th 2019: Sticking to the knitting

In Acts 11, we can read how Peter was summoned before the rest of the Disciples to account for his mixing with Gentiles.  They were really hung up about male circumcision;  it was really important to them.  According to Jewish law then, and now, it is necessary to cut away the foreskin covering of the [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: May 12th 2019: Hellenists

In Acts 9, Paul went to Jerusalem and had a hard time.  A lot of the disciples, who had stayed put, were suspicious of him.  Barnabus spoke up for him and smoothed his passage into the Christian fellowship there.  But Paul’s experience was different from the experience of those who had travelled with Jesus.  He [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: May 5th 2019: Revelation!

There are two stories from the lectionary today, with similar themes.  Peter had an unsuccessful night’s fishing and then, guided by a stranger on the shore, suddenly took a record haul.  He recognised the risen Jesus who offered him fish from the barbecue and then challenged him about his loyalty.  Peter, from that moment, changed [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: April 21st 2019: Easter in the Rear View Mirror

Sometimes, I look back at reflections that I have written and sometimes cringe at wilful cruelty to the English Language, or at an inadvertently hurtful comment.  Sometimes I am surprised and pleased by what my younger, and less experienced self, wrote.  So, on this joyful Eastertide, I am offering again, with slight corrections, the first [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: April 14th 2019: Adulation

Palm Sunday has only one story, and pretty much everyone knows it.  Adulation is the theme.  Jesus accepted the desire of people to honour him and to make their admiration public with rejoicing.  Jesus acknowledged their desire and probably played his full part in the way the crowd wanted to recognise him despite his trepidation [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: April 7th 2019: Using our Senses

Paul, in Ephesians 3, explains how he counts as error his previous life of adherence to the letter of the Jewish Law.  Now that he uses the senses with which God equipped him, he realises that there is a much better way, the way of Jesus.  And there is a goal to strive for which [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: March 31st 2019: Mothering Sunday

Judges chapter 5 is possibly the oldest piece of Jewish poetry in existence, dating from 3200 years ago.  It is often called The Song of Deborah.  Prophet and Judge to Israel, Deborah was known for her wisdom, courage and compassionate zeal for justice.  She provided an example of leadership that wasn’t normally seen in society [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: March 24th 2019: The habit of Gratitude

At the beginning of Luke 13, Jesus asks the disciples whether they think that bad things only happen to bad people, or whether they just happen.  Jesus supplies his own answer.  Psychologists tell us that our minds find it difficult to cope with the idea of bad things happening to good people.  Our minds, evidently, [...]

Reflections of a Lay Pastor: March 10th 2019: Lent Expectations

Deuteronomy 26 contains instructions about how people are to deal with their wealth.  Their first, and subsequent, harvests after coming into the promised land, has to be an occasion of gratitude.  Each person must take a representative sample of their crops and offer it to the priest whilst reciting a poem that recalls how their [...]

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