Year C 2006/2007

Lectionary

The full text of the readings for Sunday are available in our Sunday's Readings section.

Other Thoughts      Year B 05/06            Year A 07/08

Other Resources

Textweek The Text This Week - Revised Common Lectionary, Scripture Study and Worship Links

Online Revised Common Lectionary Vanderbilt Divinity Library

Earlier Thoughts Year B

Sunday, 9.15am Holy Communion

 

Before entering the sanctuary or the vestry…
Please allow the Choir to complete the ‘postlude’ and any additional songs that are part of our offering in worship – Our holding the sacred space is part of our common union - our being together in communion.

Twenty-Sixth Sunday after Pentecost 25 November 2007


It is in giving that we receive
The early church was a community committed to sharing and to “holding all in the common”. And we still know the value of sharing and of giving - But we now live in a world that promotes and glorifies acquisition and self-sustainability. We live in a world in which the few store up treasures and in fear they take more and more so that others go without - without jobs, homes, food!
All life is sacred and fragile - and it is in our giving that we discover and make real the sacred in ourselves. Please be conscious of your commitment to this community for only by our contributions can we continue to develop and realise our ministry here.

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‘Christ has no body on earth but yours.
Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is
to look out to the world.
Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good.
Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now.’
Teresa of Avila

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I AM making all things new

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Christ the King……

We come to the end of our liturgical year…. and we might contemplate the Divine echo…. I AM making all things new…….. What are our aspirations as we consider the unfolding of our St Paul’s community?…. What might be (become) our New Year resolutions?
In the words of John Lennon….
And what have you done
Another year over
And a new one just begun
Always and forever ‘Creation’ holds possibility and promise…. it holds past and future……. It is the place of Christ ….

"I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

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God ..... is not an unctuous palliative, or a super-pill, or a sugary abstraction, but .... someone present in the quick of being, one's own being, and in the present tense itself, in existence as it exists, in the fibre and the pulse of the world, and in the minute-by-minute drama of an ever-continuing, ever-poised, ever-accessible creation.
Dennis Potter

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Stir-up Sunday
Stir-up Sunday is an informal term in the Anglican Church for the last Sunday before the season of Advent.
The term comes from the opening words of the collect for the day in the Book of Common Prayer of 1549 and later:
Stir-up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Through an association of ideas, the day subsequently became connected, especially in England, with the preparation of Christmas puddings in readiness for Christmas.

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The flowers today are to honour Chris Jamieson’s mother, Joy, who recently had a fall and is unable to do anything for herself any more and cannot walk unaided; she also has dementia.
A lay preacher in the Congregational Church for many years, in 1964 she and Chris’ father bought a 100 room mansion, Bystock Court, and created a shelter for unmarried mothers, battered wives and others. Bystock is still a refuge for children with mental & physical problems. Joy will be 90 on the last day of year Dec 31 2007. Chris says she would ‘greatly appreciate our thoughts and perhaps a prayer or two’.

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And next week… We begin a new liturgical year…. Year A in the three year Anglican Cycle…..

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Parish Council would like to thank all those who participated in the survey (we had 38 replies). As with the nature of the community, the responses were diverse………..

“St Paul’s is my family where I can come to share my faith and love and hopes………..God is always around, and one of His angels to comfort me”
 “We seem to be losing energy – some who were recently active in parish affairs, no longer are”
“Many people seek deep connection, and find it here”
 “I am concerned at the low level of financial support in the church body – never enough money!”
 “In the pew sheets there is always a reference to “thank you for sharing your story” but that seems significantly absent here”
And
“For me, Peter’s particular gift is his ability to look at things from alternative viewpoints.  He is sometimes iconoclastic, at others
revolutionary, and seldom boring. I find his preaching stimulating, involving and challenging.”
 “For us, (the role of the Priest in parish life is……) Peter just as he is – warts and all – the same as we hope he accepts us”

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When we dote upon the perfections and beauties of some creature, we do not love that too much but other things too little. Never was any thing in this world loved too much but many things have been loved in a false way, and in too short a measure. ~Thomas Traherne

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To all who received him who believed in his name:
He has given power to become
Children of God.
John 1

Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost 18 November 2007

Lord, your Word calls us
to think about, to focus upon, to pattern our lives after
"whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable,"
whatever reveals real "excellence" and is truly "worthy of praise." (Philippians 4:8). Help us not only to think in this way, but also to act out these words. May our own offerings, what we give just now, as well as our daily offerings to others, reflect the best that you made us to be, and empower us to become through your Spirit. This we pray in the name of the One who gave his life for all.
Amen

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My spirit abides among you; fear not

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be glad and rejoice forever in what I am creating
as a joy and as a delight

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The Divine is the beginning of all things and the end of all things……?
How can this apparent paradox be?
Well what if we contemplate the Divine as the process, the ‘in the moment’, the each and every moment & movement….

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I am Creating
Brothers and sisters, do not be weary in doing what is right.

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Participation in the Divine creativity is our Baptismal call to “Live a life worthy of the calling to which we have been called”…. and as we engage in this Holy creativity we can anticipate a new Jerusalem… a tomorrow that is not a continuation of today… but rather a blossoming of that which we seed today…..

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The night has passed and the day lies open before us

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Saint Cecilia’s Feast Day is celebrated on 22nd November. She is the Patron Saint of musicians and of Church Music, and therefore of ‘OUR’ choir.

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Blessing
Go now and live by faith.
Patiently trust in God’s promised future;
live by God’s teachings,
and let our love for one another increase.
And may God give us grace and peace;
May Christ Jesus make us worthy of his call;
And may the Holy Spirit fulfil in us
every good resolve and work of faith.
We go in peace to love and serve the Lord
Peter Humphris

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A sense of reverence opens pathways of beauty to surprise us. The earth is full of thresholds where beauty awaits the wonder of our gaze.
John O’Donohue

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To all who received him who believed in his name:
He has given power to become
Children of God.
John 1

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Twenty Fourth Sunday after Pentecost 11 November 2007

Welcome to all who come to worship this Sunday. Welcome to all who join us for the first time; you are invited to share with us in communion and after the service for hospitality in the hall.
We Welcome Ven Kay Goldsworthy, Administrator of the Diocese of Perth as our celebrant and preacher today

Message from Peter
I had to extend my stay in Bangalore for a couple of days and a new
hotel was arranged for me. When I woke in the morning and stepped out of the hotel there was a church in front of me... St Paul's. What an auspicious sight....... On going in, I noticed some neon lights around the sanctuary arch and also over the backdrop to the altar..... as I was contemplating being at "St Paul's" a man came in and switched on the lights... The sanctuary and the altar lit up like a religious fair ground... Topped off with a neon cross....
Wherever I am.... I am still at home at St Paul's...
Peace & Love
Peter H

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We will remember Them
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you, from failing hands, we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields

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O Christ, who changes not, abide with me

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My spirit abides among you; do not fear

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Remembrance Day.. a very auspicious day for us to Remember….. and to re-member the words of the prophet Haggai…..
Imagine what a different world we would encounter if we could realise (make real) this ‘mantra’

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My spirit abides among you; fear not

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To live without fear…… without anxiety…. and so to live without pretence or denial…..
to live in the Abiding presence of the Divine…..

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My spirit abides among you; fear not

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

A sense of reverence opens pathways of beauty to surprise us. The earth is full of thresholds where beauty awaits the wonder of our gaze.
John O’Donohue

 

"The glory of God is a human being fully alive."
Iraneus

One Minute….
At 11am on 11 November 1919, Australians, for the first time, paused and stood in silent tribute to the men and women of the Australian Imperial Force who died on battlefields in the Middle East, Gallipoli and Europe. In 1997 the Governor-General issued a Proclamation urging all Australians to observe the one minute silence on Remembrance Day.

For those who died in the search for Peace

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Imagine all the people living life in peace
John Lennon

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Twenty Third Sunday after Pentecost 4 November 2007


Today we use the Blue service sheets “A Community Service”
Our service is led by members of the community and we receive the sacred elements from the ‘Reserved Sacrament”
It is an opportunity for us to know that WE hold the Sacred in Community.
We are the church and we are the becoming of the church.
It is also an opportunity for us to contemplate the place of the priest in our community, to question, to appreciate and to understand both the role of the priest and also our role in the making of this community and of ourselves as the Body of Christ.

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“the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost”

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This must surely bring a smile…… The Church (we) are the ones who expect to encounter Jesus…
And what an ironic truth….. For we can encounter the Christ if we can acknowledge that we are ‘lost’…… That’s quite easy when you look at the institution of the church (past and the present).
However, a degree of difficulty is encountered when we contemplate that which is ‘lost’ in ourselves.

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To this end we always pray for you, asking that our God will make you worthy of his call and will fulfil by his power every good resolve and work of faith,

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Blessing
Go now and live by faith.
Patiently trust in God’s promised future;
live by God’s teachings,
and let our love for one another increase.
And may God give us grace and peace;
May Christ Jesus make us worthy of his call;
And may the Holy Spirit fulfil in us
every good resolve and work of faith.
We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
Crowned with Divine abundance, girded with the joy of Love

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... to apprehend
the point of intersection of the timeless
with time, is an occupation of the saint. T.S.Eliot

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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A sense of reverence opens pathways of beauty to surprise us. The earth is full of thresholds where beauty awaits the wonder of our gaze.
John O’Donohue

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We are the bees of the invisible.
Rainer Maria Rilke

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Let nothing disturb you, Let nothing dismay you.
All things pass. God never changes.
Patience attains all that it strives for.
He who has God finds he lacks nothing.
God alone suffices.
Saint Teresa of Avila

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At the back of our brains, so to speak, there is a forgotten blaze or burst of astonishment at our own existence. The object of the artistic and spiritual life is to dig for this sunrise of wonder.'
G.K. Chesterton

 

Twenty Second Sunday after Pentecost 28 October 2007

November 1st – The Feast of All Saints & Nov 2nd – The Feast of All Souls
The true origins of Halloween lie with the ancient Celtic tribes who lived in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Brittany. For the Celts, November 1 marked the beginning of a new year and the coming of winter. The night before the new year, they celebrated the festival of Samhain, Lord of the Dead. During this festival, Celts believed the souls of the dead—including ghosts, goblins and witches—returned to mingle with the living. In order to scare away the evil spirits, people would wear masks and light bonfires.
When the Romans conquered the Celts, they added their own touches to the Samhain festival, such as making centerpieces out of apples and nuts for Pomona, the Roman goddess of the orchards. The Romans also bobbed for apples and drank cider—traditions which may sound familiar to you. But where does the Christian aspect of the holiday come into play? In 835, Pope Gregory IV moved the celebration for all the martyrs (later all saints) from May 13 to November 1. The night before became known as All Hallows’ Even or “holy evening.” Eventually the name was shortened to the current Halloween. On November 2, the Church celebrates All Souls Day.
The purpose of these feasts is to remember those who have died, whether they are officially recognized by the Church as saints or not. It is a celebration of the “communion of saints,” which reminds us that the Church is not bound by space or time.

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Crowned with Divine abundance, girded with the joy of Love

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Threading Camels
Today’s readings are full of “principles” for living a life that abides in the Divine…..
Biblical literalists and fundamentalists seems to delight in the “truth” that

“everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved”
The very same seem to be somewhat more reticent when encountering the same “truth” that says

“Sell all that you own and distribute the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me”

All of us are called to leave home, to leave our family… and with the open trust of ‘little Children’ to become individuals, and members of One Holy family… The Body of Christ.. This is no “truth” to be found in a book, rather it is our truth reflected in our encounter with the Word made flesh.

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The floral & produce display in the Church today is in memory of
Derrick Robertson, who died 10 years ago.
Derrick, a farmer, loved the land both in South Africa, his country of birth as well as his adopted country
of Australia.
Go well Dad.
Joan Jessup

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... to apprehend
the point of intersection of the timeless
with time, is an occupation of the saint. T.S.Eliot

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We are the bees of the invisible.
Rainer Maria Rilke

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Let nothing disturb you, Let nothing dismay you.
All things pass. God never changes.
Patience attains all that it strives for.
He who has God finds he lacks nothing.
God alone suffices.
Saint Teresa of Avila

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I want to beg you ... to be patient towards all that is unsolved in
your heart and try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue......
Rainer Maria Rilke

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Twenty First Sunday after Pentecost 21 October 2007


We Welcome Rev’d Canon Tim Spencer, Chaplain to Royal Perth Hospital as our celebrant and preacher today

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From the Australian September 22nd 2004
Reporting some initial details from an Anglicare survey – in regard to “Insecurity in Australia” the following was quoted:
“The levels of trust were lowest toward people from different races”
And – as if that’s not bad enough – when reporting on confidence in institutions the following observations were evident:
“established churches rated low at 36% just above local government, the legal system, major companies and banks…. The media was lowest at 15%... although the level of confidence in trade unions was so low it was off the scale”
Together – in community – we can share, explore and discover – and find confidence and security in taking the risk of becoming Christ-Like.

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Your Divine Word is the sweetness of my Life

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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PRAYER
The work of prayer belongs to the angels, and is therefore, the special concern of the church. St Symeon of Thessalonica

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I will make a new covenant
Jeremiah knows with confidence that “the days are surely coming”…. and we too have confidence in tomorrow…. What we hear through the voice of the prophet is a call to re-creation… tomorrow is not just more of the same… forever each new day carries the promise of God’s divine Love.
And its not an election promise… rather a promise for all who elect to acknowledge the Divine.
We are therefore, to look “within” ourselves remembering that what is possible has forever been birthed in us. It is in our sharing of that which is within us that we shall participate in the creation of a new tomorrow. And with our participation can we make real the claim that we are the Body of Christ.

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pray always and not to lose heart

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'We are the bees of the invisible.'
Rainer Maria Rilke

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"The vocation of the prophet is to keep alive the ministry of imagination,
to keep on conjuring and proposing alternative futures to the single one the agents of the dominant culture want to urge as the only thinkable one." Walter Bruegemann

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Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost 14 October 2007


COMMUNITY: the city in which we find ourselves

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We have a wonderful capacity to experience life and to share with each other the richness that we have. In our “Common Union” we can hold others and be held ourselves – we can realise that there is an economy in sharing, there is an ability to acquire new skills and insights by sharing – and we can discover the Power of the Spirit that is affirmed in the experience of the early church. As the Body of Christ we become a community committed to sharing and to “holding all in the common”.

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We glorify your name O Lord, for in you we find life

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A Contemporary Australian version of the Gospel
On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he entered a village, he looked out to sea and saw ten lepers on a leaking Indonesian fishing boat that came close by and approached him. Keeping their distance, 13 they called out, saying, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" 14 When he saw them, he said to them, “Go Away You Can’t Land Here!” – Somehow it just doesn’t sound the same to me! (St Paul’s 14/10/01)

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"The mysterious reality of the Eucharist—'My flesh is real food and my blood real drink' (Jn 6:55)—is a puzzle to some, a scandal to others. It has always been so.... But for those who believe in Jesus’ teaching because they believe in Jesus Christ himself, the Eucharist is, among all his gifts to us, the most cherished and the cause of our deepest gratitude."
U.S. Bishops, The Eucharist and the Hungers of the Human Family (1975)

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Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it.
Hebrews 13:2

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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200 Feet on the Street
Christians with Pride will again walk in the annual Pride Parade in Northbridge on Saturday 27th October… Please see Theo as we’ll make up a group from St Paul’s.
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St Paul’s…….. Participating in all that is Good
We are now using Fair Trade Coffee and Fair Trade Tea….
It costs more in the very short (selfish) term…. But it creates rewards by sharing our wealth in a more equitable manner. (Thanks Theo)

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What is the ‘strength’ we receive from the “grace that is in Christ Jesus”?…. What is ‘The Power of Love’ that we sing about?

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Birthed in Love, we are called to be a Holy People…….. Sacred……. We are incarnate, made flesh, and the Divine abides in us…….. The closer we contemplate the Word of God….. the more we begin to understand…… we are the Body of Christ. And we become whole….. for our faith has made us well….

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We glorify your name O Lord, for in you we find life

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Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost 7 October 2007

Rekindle the gift of God that is within you
If we look into the bible as we look into a mirror, we see our lives reflected in the passages of Holy Scripture. We can readily appreciate that these ancient writings were initially revealed to a more primitive people, a people whose knowing of God was tempered by their experiential knowing of a universe with the Earth at its centre. Today we have a much fuller appreciation of the wonder and abundance of creation. Yet that primal or primitive voice dwells within us, as can readily be seen by the often simplistic, fear/greed-driven responses that are made in response to world affairs. Fear quite naturally elicits a primal (or primitive) response. In Christ true wisdom is revealed, God’s whole self-giving Love is made manifest to us and asks of us a much more demanding response: to respond in Love and to initiate creative activity that is born in Love so that we may continue to grow in maturity into Christ who is revealed in us and through us. Together we are One Body - not just the Christian Church (a beginning) but all peoples - the whole of creation splendidly revealed in self-giving.
We see in Christ the promise revealed
(From St Paul’s Service Sheet Pentecost 19 – 2004)

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Lord of all Love, we remember you are our creation

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If the soul is vigilant and withdraws from all distraction and abandons its own will, then the spirit of God invades it and it can conceive because it is free to do so.” Abba Cronius

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"The mysterious reality of the Eucharist—'My flesh is real food and my blood real drink' (Jn 6:55)—is a puzzle to some, a scandal to others. It has always been so.... But for those who believe in Jesus’ teaching because they believe in Jesus Christ himself, the Eucharist is, among all his gifts to us, the most cherished and the cause of our deepest gratitude."
U.S. Bishops, The Eucharist and the Hungers of the Human Family (1975)

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Did You Know?
Between 1995-2004, public investment in tertiary education declined by 4% while in other OECD countries it increased by an average of 49%

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Quote from Beryl….. “Stuart is actually looking like his own self once again and feeling quite good, he says. I am watching his every movement..!!”

The opening verses of Lamentations declare a reality of a divine world that has been corrupted…. It is a Lament that we hear almost every day as we consider the functioning (or not) of our institutions, the orientation of our culture and the overall decline in the biodiversity that sustains our Earth…
rekindle the gift of God that is within you
This is the way forward… this is an arrow that points away from the forces of lamentation.
rekindle the gift of God that is within you
This is a calling back into the Sacred life of the Divine, and so a re-enchantment of life and of creation itself. We can easily be disempowered by our very smallness……. But “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed” much could be accomplished…..
Our Church Community is the starting point, not the end point (nor the object) of our faith… Here we can begin to “rekindle” ourselves and each other…. Here we seek “the good treasure entrusted to you, with the help of the Holy Spirit living in us.”

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Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost 30 September 2007 

We trust in God, the Divine presence of Love in all life

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there is great gain in godliness
we brought nothing into the world
the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil
pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, gentleness

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If the soul is vigilant and withdraws from all distraction and abandons its own will, then the spirit of God invades it and it can conceive because it is free to do so.” Abba Cronius

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The Bible is not very big on “Economic Rationalism”…. In fact it proposed quite a different model for cultural creativity…..
In Biblical terms a “Mining Boom” is of real benefit when it seeks to uncover the depths of our souls…rather than pillaging the resources of the Earth…..
Today’s gospel is one of those “mind the Gap” texts… it speaks of “between you and us a great chasm has been fixed” … An opportunity for us to become aware of where we stand in the ever widening gap between rich and poor.

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"The mysterious reality of the Eucharist—'My flesh is real food and my blood real drink' (Jn 6:55)—is a puzzle to some, a scandal to others. It has always been so.... But for those who believe in Jesus’ teaching because they believe in Jesus Christ himself, the Eucharist is, among all his gifts to us, the most cherished and the cause of our deepest gratitude."
U.S. Bishops, The Eucharist and the Hungers of the Human Family (1975)

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Where is Everyone?
50 of our Community are at Nanga for our Community Week-End…. As we celebrate Eucharist here so they gather in the bush setting - We are One Body
NANGA 2007 – Our community Long Weekend

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The Lord’s Prayer (an extract from our Nanga weekend reflections
"The Lord's Prayer resembles other prayers that come out of the Jewish matrix of Jesus' time and contains three common Jewish elements: praise, petition and a yearning for the common Kingdom of God. It consists of an introductory address and seven petitions. . . .
"Biblical scholars disagree about Jesus' meaning in the Lord's Prayer. Some view it as "existential," referring to man's present experience on earth, while others interpret it as eschatological, referring to the coming Kingdom of God. The prayer lends itself to both interpretations, and further questions are posed by the existence of other translations and the problems inherent in the process of translation. In the case of the term daily bread for example, the Greek word "epiousion" which modifies "bread" has no known parallels in Greek writing and may have meant "for tomorrow." The petition "Give us this day our daily bread" may thus be given the eschatological interpretation "Give us today a foretaste of the heavenly banquet to come." This interpretation is supported by Ethiopic versions and by St. Jerome's reference to the reading "bread of the future" in the lost Gospel According to the Hebrews. The eschatological interpretation suggests that the Lord's Prayer may have been used in a eucharistic setting in the early church."

Other versions of the Lord's Prayer

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It is in giving that we receive
The early church was a community committed to sharing and to “holding all in the common”. And we still know the value of sharing and of giving - But we now live in a world that promotes and glorifies acquisition and self-sustainability. We live in a world in which a few store up treasures and in fear they take more and more so that others go without - without jobs, homes, food!
All life is sacred and fragile - and it is in our giving that we discover and make real the sacred in ourselves. Please be conscious of your commitment to this community for only by our contributions can we continue to develop and realise our ministry here.

 

Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost 23 September 2007

As we are swamped by the bland promises from all parties in the lead up to the election - take time to listen to the “still small voice of calm”
“We are on the threshold of a new era. The greatest responsibilities of our age rest not only with the big nation powers of the modern world, but also with the host of small nations, those whose ancient dreams are on the verge of extinction.” Ben Okri

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NOW (more than) EVER we should seek to align our actions to the source of all life.
"Christ has no body on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is to look out to the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now." Teresa of Avila

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We are pilgrims on a journey

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Is there no balm in Gilead?
Watching our parliament on the news the other night….. it is easy to ‘find’ the place that created this exclamation…..
Around the world this question is echoed in the cries of many people – And we ourselves must surely reflect on the same question at times…
We are almost conditioned to look for “balm” in terms of gratification… rather than as a means to restoration & health. We also look for ‘balm” to come to us from outside………
However, another perspective is to reflect on ourselves as the balm – for if “we are the Body of Christ” then surely within ourselves lies all that is sought for!
Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and forgive our sins, for your name's sake.

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Protect God's creation: Vatican issues new green message for world's Catholics
The Vatican yesterday added its voice to a rising chorus of warnings from churches around the world that climate change and abuse of the environment is against God's will, and that the one billion-strong Catholic church must become far greener.
At a Vatican conference on climate change, Pope Benedict urged bishops, scientists and politicians - including UK environment secretary David Miliband - to "respect creation" while "focusing on the needs of sustainable development". The Guardian
John Vidal and Tom Kington in Rome - Friday April 27, 2007

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How to switch to Green Energy
Switching is easy. Just call 13 13 53 to sign-up over the phone

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You never Enjoy the World aright, till the Sea it self floweth in your Veins, till you are Clothed with the Heavens, and Crowned with the Stars: and Perceiv your self to be the Sole Heir of the whole World: and more than so, becaus Men [humanity] are in it who are evry one Sole Heirs as well as you. Till you can Sing and Rejoyce and Delight in God, as Misers do in Gold, and Kings in Scepters, you never Enjoy the World.
From Centuries of Meditation I.29 by Thomas Traherne(1637-1674)

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Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost 16 September 2007

Thank You.. Frank for your presence, and your ministry with us this morning
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'Be not lax in celebrating. Be not lazy in the festive service of God. be ablaze with enthusiasm.  Let us be an alive, burning offering before the altar of God.'
Hildegard of Bingen

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From last week’s sermon:
“So therefore… give up all your possessions”
What possesses us?
What does it mean to “Give up” rather than “give away”?

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And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. Anais Nin
Rekindle in me the sparks of your beauty

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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When God is a child, there’s joy in our song,
The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong
And none shall be afraid.

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Sitting quietly, doing nothing, spring comes and the grass grows by itself. (Zen saying)

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To see the world in a grain of sand
And heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour.
(Blake)

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He who hunts for flowers will find flowers;
And he who loves weeds will find weeds.
(Henry Ward Beecher)

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Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost 9 September 2007

So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.
We are reminded over and over in the Gospel of the ‘worldly gravity’ that sucks us into a rat race of acquisition… And we re-member our calling as we come together in community and share with each other – we make real a force that defies ‘worldly gravity’. It is our contribution, our sharing that enables us to be, and to build a ministry here. As well as our financial contribution we also “Tithe”, or share with the common, our time and our talents, and so realise much that we talk about and dream of….
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

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I am wonderfully made and I am with you O God

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Come, go down to the potter's house, and there I will let you hear my words.
Just like the clay in the potter's hand, so are you in my hand… says the LORD.
In appreciating the world is round and not flat so humanity deepened an understanding of the world and this in turn provided new insights… And as we deepen our appreciation of the Divine so too we discover new insights.
Jeremiah’s illustration of the potter has even more significance when we appreciate that God is not a “man in the sky”…… We realise that the “work” of the potter – the Divine activity – is accomplished in relation to. and in response to, the emerging shape of the clay……..
The Divine Activity is not directed to a pre-ordained outcome…. rather WE are the determining factor in the emerging shape of creation…..
And, in faith, we seek to find that shape that best pleases (is resonant with) the Divine activity… the Power of Love.

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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The existence of evil remains a mystery to me:
I prefer that mystery to any explanation of it that I know.
Edwin Muir

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When God is a child, there’s joy in our song,
The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong
And none shall be afraid.

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If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being and who is willing to destroy his [or her] own heart. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

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The universe conjured up for us by our senses is not the Universe. We know that the ears of the bat, the eyes of the bee, the nose of the dog, the sensitivity of the bird to magnetic fields ... shape a perception of the world wholly different from our own, yet no more or less true.
Don Paterson

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And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. Anais Nin

Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost 2 September 2007

Refugees – the Gospel waiting to be heard……
Refugees are of every race and religion and can be found in every part of the world. Forced to flee out of fear for their lives and liberty, they often give up everything – home, belongings, family and country – for an uncertain future in a strange land.
Their plight is one of the great tragedies of our time and their fate is linked to political and human rights questions that should be of concern to every one of us. (UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees)

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For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son

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Jesus was a refugee

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We praise the Divine, who feeds us and satisfies our longing

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Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it.
Hebrews 13:2
Jeremiah provides us with a “party political broadcast on behalf of God
Hebrews reads like a “how to vote” card
And the Gospel….. It gives us an orientation as Electors…Those who are called to decide!

As we come together and receive the sacrament, the very ‘Power of the Divine’, we are fed and strengthened so that we might hold the balance of Power….. The Divine Power that is the democratic right of all peoples.
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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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‘Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you
stop opening presents and listen.’ Bobby - age 7

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‘When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.’ Karen - age 7

 

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When God is a child, there’s joy in our song,
The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong
And none shall be afraid.

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If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate.’ Nikka - age 6

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From last week’s sermon
‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you’:
Each one of us is consecrated, commissioned, called, baptised and delivered, in and through the divine word.
Our birth, our very being is formed in the divine.
You are part of the fire; this is our truth and our faith.
‘Do not be afraid, for I am with you to deliver you’ - to bring you to birth, to bring you to birth into the fullness of life.

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‘Ultimately our image of God reflects what we value most
and, simultaneously, our image of God reinforces what we value most.’
William Loader, Murdoch University, Uniting Church in Australia.

 

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Jesus was a Refugee

 

Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost 26 August 2007

Giving You must give some time to your fellow men. Even if it's a little thing, do something for others - something for which you get no pay but the privilege of doing it. Albert Schweister

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Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need. Kahlil Gibran

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Give what you have. To someone, it may be better than you dare to think. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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In a world that measures success by what we have taken – It is easy to lose sight of the opportunities we have for giving. In our giving we experience God’s own activity – in our giving we experience our creativity.

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For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son

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I formed you in the womb I knew you

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God is a consuming fire
As children we were taught a healthy fear and respect for fire…. And in Australia there are Fire Warnings and the same fear is emphasised each time we confront the reality of summer bushfires…..
As Adults, however, we appreciate that fire is a powerful tool that gives light and life when employed with purpose.
God is a consuming fire
And so the question is, are we still afraid….. are we still childlike in our approach to God?
Or have we matured, grown and so are now able to encounter the Divine with Purpose and so realise the power of the Divine.
Our life choices become our life orientation –
Pray that we always remember:

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I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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From last week’s sermon:
‘Give me fuel, give me fire, give me that which I desire’. (Metallica)

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The existence of evil remains a mystery to me:
I prefer that mystery to any explanation of it that I know.
Edwin Muir

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Children's Song after Communion

When God is a child, there’s joy in our song,
The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong
And none shall be afraid.

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If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being and who is willing to destroy his [or her] own heart. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

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The universe conjured up for us by our senses is not the Universe. We know that the ears of the bat, the eyes of the bee, the nose of the dog, the sensitivity of the bird to magnetic fields ... shape a perception of the world wholly different from our own, yet no more or less true.
Don Paterson

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And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. Anais Nin

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Sunday 19th August Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost

Giving
You must give some time to your fellow men. Even if it's a little thing, do something for others - something for which you get no pay but the privilege of doing it. Albert Schweister
Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need. Kahlil Gibran

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Give what you have. To someone, it may be better than you dare to think. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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In a world that measures success by what we have taken – It is easy to lose sight of the opportunities we have for giving. In our giving we experience God’s own activity – in our giving we experience our creativity.

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For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son

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May your face shine upon us, that we may be a light to the world
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When Jesus tells his friends he comes
to set the earth ablaze
it must at least be wise to pause
and ask what might be razed.
(Michael Hudson 1998)
Every time a rocket is sent forth into the heavens the countdown ends with “Ignition….. Take Off!”
And perhaps that mirrors the process of our ‘Souls’ seeking the “things that are above”
First there must be “Ignition”……. "I came to bring fire to the earth”
And then “Take off”…… “let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us”
Differences become evident in both stages of the “launch”…….. for some (many) are ignited by fear rather than the fire of Divine Passion…. Likewise some take-off on worldly races of competition rather than turning toward the Sun (Son)……

it must at least be wise to pause
And ask…. What Ignites?........ And in what
direction do we “Take-Off”?

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‘Is not my word like fire,’ says the Lord, ‘and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?’

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‘Is not my word like fire,’ says the Lord, ‘and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?’
As we rejoice in the gift of this new day, so may the light of your presence, O God, set our hearts on fire with love for you.
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Someday after mastering winds, waves, tides and gravity, we shall
harness the energies of love, and then, for the second time in the
history of the world, man [we] will discover fire.
~Teilhard de Chardin~
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When we dote upon the perfections and beauties of some creature, we do not love that too much but other things too little. Never was any thing in this world loved too much but many things have been loved in a false way, and in too short a measure. ~Thomas Traherne

 

Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost 12 August 2007

Giving to One Another
We know deep within that that “one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions”. And we can choose to live out that which we are reminded of as we give to others and share “in the common”…. As we seek to realise the power and the presence of ‘The Body of Christ” we might consider our contribution to building up the ‘body’ in our parish community… For it is our contribution, our sharing that enables us to be, and to build a ministry here.
It is in giving that we receive
Everything we do and every expense in maintaining St Paul’s is funded by the generosity of this community. “The Church” does not provide a financial contribution; even Peter’s wages come from the giving we commit to each and every week.

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We rejoice in the beauty of the Divine

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Vision
Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your doings from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, rescue the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow. [Isaiah 1:16-17]
Faith
the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.[Hebrews 11:1]
Fear… or rather a lack of Fear
Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.[Luke 12:32]

Today’s readings seem to take us back to the basics of our Christian being….. We are called to be a people of VISION, who live in FAITH and without FEAR…… From the earliest beginnings the Church has always held a different worldview to that of the dominant culture…
And today the same holds true. We are called to bring about change….. to co-create with the Divine and to reveal… as in Christ… the Divine activity that is born in Love.

 

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Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
Rumi

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In stillness and in staying quiet, there lies your strength Isaiah 30:15

 

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost 5 August 2007

“whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good”
Galatians 6:10
In the busyness of our day-to-day living it is so easy to be caught up in our own affairs… making time to serve each other, and to sow the seeds of a New Creation can sometimes be relegated to a desire that comes to life on Sunday mornings… In our financial giving we support each other in and through the ministry of the Church…. Our regular commitment, like regular prayer, provides us with a framework in which to gain a perspective on everything we do… Please take time to reflect on that which you give to the common and that which you contribute to the life and future of the church, for it is our dependence on each other that gives us strength and hope.
All that we have – is what we share
St Paul’s receives no income that it does not create itself.

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We Give thanks and Rejoice in the Divine wonder of God’s Love

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"Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions."

A part of each of us is well aware of this truth…. another part of us employs great energy to live in denial of the same truth.
Why? because to enliven that part of us that knows this truth we also have to come face to face with our mortality and so too our immortality.. most want only to maintain the status quo and live in a small world in which “I’m alright”.

The shift to a life in Christ is very simple – If/When we contemplate a life that acknowledges the abundance of the divine for all peoples. Imagine a world that valued what was given, and what was shared instead of that which is possessed.

Someone once said the only place to store food is in the mouths of the hungry.
The Gospel calls forth a world in which all are filled and fulfilled.

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There is nothing in all the Universe so much like God as silence.
Meister Eckhart

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And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
Anais Nin

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Ninth Sunday after Pentecost 29 July 2007

 

“whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good” Gal 6:10
In the busyness of our day-to-day living it is so easy to be caught up in our own affairs… making time to serve each other, and to sow the seeds of a New Creation can sometimes be relegated to a desire that comes to life on Sunday mornings… In our financial giving we support each other in and through the ministry of the Church…. Our regular commitment, like regular prayer, provides us with a framework in which to gain a perspective on everything we do,,, Please take time to reflect on that which you give to the common and that which you contribute to the life and future of the church, for it is our dependence on each other that gives us strength and hope.
All that we have – is what we share – St Paul’s receives no income that it does not create itself.
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We know the Divine presence in the midst of all Life
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Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find;
knock, and the door will be opened for you.
“When you have a headache, you do not go on praying, “I want an aspirin” but you go and find the remedy. You pray for wealth and work hard to get it. You pray for relief from illness and you do not rest until you get rid of it.
Yet, you pray “Lord, free me from egoism, lust, anger and hatred” or “Lord, let me behold you,” but do nothing more about it….
When the prayer goes unanswered, the sincere man re-examines the whole position, knowing that either the effort is not strong or it is misdirected. He wonders, “Where does the prayer arise” What is the power that makes me think, speak and pray?” Only if that source is pure, is the prayer granted.”
Swami Venkatessananda

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pray without ceasing
for
God made you alive together with Christ
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Be Still and Know that I AM God
As we gather (ourselves and together) for worship, many find it helpful to still the noise of the everyday. Our Music Ministry team provide some sung reflections and an introit to assist us in being centred. Please be honouring to those who desire the stillness and prayerful silence. Conversations can always take place outside of the church, or later after the service.

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This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognised by yourself as a mighty one.
The being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.
I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake.
Life is no brief candle to me it’s a sort of splendid torch which I’ve got a hold of for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.

 

 

Eighth Sunday after Pentecost 22 July 2007

“whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good” Gal 6:10
In the busyness of our day-to-day living it is so easy to be caught up in our own affairs… making time to serve each other, and to sow the seeds of a New Creation can sometimes be relegated to a desire that comes to life on Sunday mornings… In our financial giving we support each other in and through the ministry of the Church…. Our regular commitment, like regular prayer, provides us with a framework in which to gain a perspective on everything we do,,, Please take time to reflect on that which you give to the common and that which you contribute to the life and future of the church, for it is our dependence on each other that gives us strength and hope.
All that we have – is what we share – St Paul’s receives no income that it does not create itself.
We know the Divine presence in the midst of all Life

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The time is surely coming, says the Lord GOD, when I will send a famine on the land; not a famine of bread, or a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD
Is that time already here!
Is such a time an experience in every age, and in everyone at some stage in their becoming fully human?
Fully Human… in the Divine Image
The image of the invisible God
Perhaps, as we look at ourselves it is difficult to comprehend that - We are an image of the invisible God! Yet somehow, we know we are called to reveal and to be a revelation of God’s mystery, we are called to make known the power of love.
For this I toil and struggle with all the energy that he powerfully inspires within me.
In our prayer life, in our sharing and giving, and I our being together as community the divine is revealed and we become revelations of the divine.
Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.
Have we chosen the better part… which will not be taken away from us?

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Be Still and Know that I AM God
As we gather (ourselves and together) for worship, many find it helpful to still the noise of the everyday. Our Music Ministry team provide some sung reflections and an introit to assist us in being centred. Please be honouring to those who desire the stillness and prayerful silence. Conversations can always take place outside of the church, or later after the service.


Seventh Sunday after Pentecost 15 July 2007

“whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good” Gal 6:10
In the busyness of our day-to-day living it is so easy to be caught up in our own affairs… making time to serve each other, and to sow the seeds of a New Creation can sometimes be relegated to a desire that comes to life on Sunday mornings… In our financial giving we support each other in and through the ministry of the Church…. Our regular commitment, like regular prayer, provides us with a framework in which to gain a perspective on everything we do,,, Please take time to reflect on that which you give to the common and that which you contribute to the life and future of the church, for it is our dependence on each other that gives us strength and hope.
All that we have – is what we share – St Paul’s receives no income that it does not create itself.

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We know the Divine presence in the midst of all Life

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What are we called to be as a community that seek and worship God? And as part of the Diocese of Perth’s 150 Anniversary we might ask ourselves and each other … Where are we Going?
What is our vocation in a secular world?
We are called out of darkness into the light and We are called to ‘Shine as Light in the World to the Glory of God’.
We are called to be Christ-like
in the gospel we are called to Go and do likewise
It is a wonderful and daunting call - to let go of our self centred aspirations and to seek wholeness and fullness in and for the community - to give of ourselves (as Christ gave) that we too might realise and incarnate the power of Christ that is given to us.
Somehow, we are all shaped by our culture, our community and our relationships with each other – and so too, we also give shape to the same – so perhaps what we heard last week holds good for another telling –
whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all

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Be Still and Know that I AM God
Each Sunday as we gather (ourselves and together) for worship, many of us find it helpful to still the noise of the everyday. Our Music Ministry team provide us with some sung reflections and an introit to further assist us in centring ourselves. Please be honouring to those who desire the stillness and prayerful silence. Conversations can always take place outside of the church, or later after the service.

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We’re not made by God to mass kill one another… and that’s backed up by the Gospel. Lying and war are always associated. Pay attention to war-makers when they try to defend their current war - if they move their lips they’re lying - Phil Berrigan
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Fifth Sunday after Pentecost 1 July 2007

Elijah said to Elisha, "Tell me what I may do for you, before I am taken from you." Elisha said,
"Please let me inherit a double share of your spirit."
We are invited to consider the continuation of blessing…and we might ask of ourselves what are the blessings that our children and all who come after us will ask for a double measure of…… and if the answer is hard to find then let us look to ourselves………..
Your way, O God, is holy. What god is so great as our God?
Paul writes about is the way of Freedom and Love. In our western culture we think we have both and in good measure, except of course for those who are overtly not free and overtly not loved…….. What if our treatment of refugees is a clear projection of our inner paradigm? Do we need to look again (within) and seek again for Freedom & Love……

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Be Aware
Our Gov’t is selectively responding to Child Abuse with the combined efforts of the Police and the Military.
What does this remind you of – Where does it lead
and what does it say about us – You and Me?
Churches in Australia have combined with other agencies in an open letter to the Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous affairs, Mal Brough. Referring to "our concerns about aspects of the Australian Government’s response to (the problem of child abuse in Indigenous communities) as outlined in your statement of 21 June 2007",

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“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
But it is a much more fearful thing to fall out of them.”
D H Laurence

 

Third Sunday after Pentecost 27 June 2007

Go forth on your Journey
For the benefit of the many
For the joy of the many
Out of compassion for the welfare
The Benefit and the Joy of all beings
Buddhist Blessing

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Divine Love is the Abundance of Life

it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

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Can we picture for ourselves a way of living that is more fully ‘In Christ’?

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“This work of being endlessly delighted is the highest calling of the soul, for it is a source of endless delight to God” [T.Traherne]

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Most holy God,
may this Eucharist
accomplish in Your Church
the unity and peace it signifies

The Stillness and Silence we experience in Church enables us to ‘listen’ for the Word of the Divine that is spoken to all
Please….respect this sacred space and share your hospitality and your conversations when we gather in the Hall following the service… Be Still & Know That I AM God

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Go into this week,
assured of the life-giving mercy of God
touched and embraced by the healing love of Jesus Christ
energised and inspired by the powerful breath of the Holy Spirit.

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“Heaven would be a boring place without Earth.”
Thomas Traherne

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Commentary on the Gospel
Other commentators give the traditional interpretation of the woman’s
unbound hair as immodest a more intense colouring. They see the unbound hair as part of a cluster of sexually provocative gestures by the woman. Joel Green describes her behaviour as “erotic” and therefore “outrageous.” Letting down her hair “would have been on a par with appearing topless in public.” Likewise, her touching of Jesus’ feet is like the fondling that slave girls performed on guests at dinner parties as a prelude to sexual favors. The same or similar points are made also by Kathleen Corley (to whom Green refers), François Bovon, and others. These interpreters are not saying that the woman’s gestures are meant by her to be erotic, only that they would have been construed that way (e.g., by a character like Simon) and that the public connotations of her actions heighten the drama and underscore the Lukan theme that Jesus accepts the disreputables.
cosgrove@seminary.edu - Northern Seminary, Lombard, IL 60513
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“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
But it is a much more fearful thing to fall out of them.”
D H Laurence

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We are the Body of Christ

Holding our sacred space in Sunday Worship when the Priest is away
Joan & Val taking a funeral service
Creatively looking at project management for the East End Development
Establishing “Just Manna” to assist with refugees
Creative workshops for the Stained Glass Window
Creating and facilitating an exploration of God through Dance
Fundraising and Awareness through a Global warming Dinner
Our Choir giving a wonderful presence to Cora’s funeral
Picking up our returning Pilgrims from the Airport
Holding Michael, Ronnie and their daughter Heidi in Love
Being a place of Prayer and a Celebration of worship
Providing Computer resources to some families in need
Supporting an Orphanage in Denpassar - Bali
And that’s just in the last few days….

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Welcome Home to all our Pilgrims

 

Second Sunday after Pentecost

Go forth on your Journey
For the benefit of the many
For the joy of the many
Out of compassion for the welfare
The Benefit and the Joy of all beings
Buddhist Blessing

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The Divine lifts up our hearts

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We continue to live and to draw life from the experience of Easter, together with the dancing flames of Pentecost as part of our reality.
Our journey for the months ahead, in this season “after Pentecost” (the old Ordinary Time), which extends to the end of November, is to look at what is revealed in the teachings and the life of the Christ.
Jesus promised a helper, an Advocate, who would stand with all making the Divine work of creation a possibility and a reality.
"Christ has no body on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is to look out to the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now."
Teresa of Avila

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Corpus Christi – The Body of Christ
our calling and our becoming

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Go into this week,
assured of the life-giving mercy of God
touched and embraced by the healing love of Jesus Christ
energised and inspired by the powerful breath of the Holy Spirit.

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Almighty God,consoloer of the afflicted
You bring light to the mystery of suffering and death
and reveal your Divine life in the face of Chris:
in the trials of our daily pilgrimage,
we are forever one with Christ in the passion of the cross
and the power of the resurrection;
We seek life with Christ, who abides with us and in union with
the Divine trinity of Love. Amen.
Adapted from APBA

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Gospel Commentary………
The anticipation of the Messiah in late (third-second century B.C.E.) Judaism included the belief that pious Jews who had died would rise from the dead to be part of the Messiah’s reign (see Dn 12:2-3; 2 Mac 7:9-36). Jesus alludes to this expectation in his answer to John the Baptist’s disciples in v 22. It is precisely to verify this statement that Luke includes this raising of the widow’s son to life at this point in his Gospel.
Her status as a widow losing her only son is significant to Luke — she had just lost her sole means of support, and as a woman alone would be a virtual outcast from society, having no more claim as a productive member and dependent on others’ charity for her support. Jesus’ intention to remove barriers of division and gather all people as one is evident here, as it is in passages detailing his involvement with foreigners, lepers, and sinners.
www.olaclaremont.org

“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
But it is a much more fearful thing to fall out of them.”
D H Lawrence

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May we speak with the same voice

 

Trinity Sunday 3 June 2007

At PENTECOST we re-member that the Holy Spirit has been given to us. The creation of the divine in humanity that we celebrated at Christmas is now re-told and re-encountered as a gifting/birthing in each of us. All of humanity, and every aspect of creation, is gifted with, and by, the Divine.
As those who gather to give thanks for the self-giving of God, we can glimpse the response that is called from us - the Christ-like response that is the giving of our selves….
May we look toward the future, a future that is of our creation, a future that will be gifted from that which we give today and every day.
We are crowned with God’s Glory

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Today we use the Blue service sheets “A community Service”
Our service is led by members of the community and we receive the sacred elements from the ‘Reserved Sacrament”
It is an opportunity for us to know that WE hold the Sacred in Community.
We are the church and we are the becoming of the church.
It is also an opportunity for us to contemplate the place of the priest in our community, to question, to appreciate and to understand both the role of the priest and also our role in the making of this community and of ourselves as the Body of Christ.

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The Trinity is the largest embrace in the universe…. All of us live within the circle of the Trinity. No one or no thing can fall out of this circle. In God there is no outside… regardless of how numbed, ordinary or dull a life might seem to itself or to others, each life is urgent with divinity… Each of us is born out of a different place in the circle of God’s heart. This is the reason why each individual is unique: each comes from a different nest in the divine. It is towards this nest that our deepest longing tends; it is only here that the soul can discover her true poise and rhythm.
From “The priestliness of the Human Heart” by John O’Donohue

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Trinity reflections with a friend over coffee
If you had three wishes what would they be?
Three things that would improve our church community?
What are three things you have enjoyed in life?
What are your three temptations?
What are your three gifts?
Who are your three heroes/heroines????

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Trinity…….
Although we have been inherited a representation of the Trinity as Father, Son & Holy Spirit… we can perhaps appreciate that this is an (one) attempt to portray a conceptual paradigm of the Divine….
Reflect on your paradigm, your experience on the threefold nature of God

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

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The Trinity – The Divine dancing in One Embrace

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"Was Pentecost a miracle of speaking,
or one of hearing and understanding?"
The Journey with Jesus: Notes to Myself, Daniel B. Clendenin,

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Pentecost 27 May 2007

From the service sheet PENTECOST 2006….

Church East End A group of 13 met last Tuesday and continued to conversation, concluding with the following summary:
This is an opportunity to say/define what is important to our generation of worshippers in the early 21st century. An opportunity to define who we are and embrace the challenge of integrating the (NeoGothic) past of 100 years ago with the present; for this to be stated, seen and sensed in grounds, buildings and symbols; to create and leave something which speaks of who we are/were and what we are living out/lived out for future generations
Next conversation at Port and Theology Tuesday 13 June 2006 at 7:15 p.m.

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We may also be glorified

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When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place
We are one and Yet we are many. We speak a common language and Yet in different tongues. We are joined together and Yet we live in separate lands.
We are one and Yet we are many.
We find ourselves in “one place’ when we look toward the Divine… and when we attend to the common…..
We find ourselves in one place with others when we Give to others
Being one is not about geography, it is not about birthright, it is not about belief…. It is about being all that we are called to be……
It is to be the Body of Christ open and accepting and honouring of the whole of creation

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Now is the time to dance heaven's dance,
Time to discern eternity's face,
Moment of knowing beyond all sight,
Day of God's smile and tender embrace.
(W L Wallace)

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Pentecost calls us to re-member that the Holy Spirit has been given to us. The creation of the divine in humanity that we celebrated at Christmas is now re-told and re-encountered as a gifting/birthing in each of us. All of humanity, and every aspect of creation, is gifted with, and by, the Divine.
As those who gather to give thanks for the self-giving of God, we can glimpse the response that is called from us - the Christ-like response that is the giving of our selves….
May we look toward the future, a future that is of our creation, a future that will be gifted from that which we give today and every day.

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May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

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Christmas – The Divine Creation is Given
Easter – The Divine is revealed in Humanity
Pentecost – The Divine is realised in all

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

 

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Flame-dancing Spirit
Come sweep us off our feet
And Dance us through our days.
Surprise us with your rhythms;
dare us to try new steps,
explore new patterns
and new partnerships.
Release us from old routines
to swing in abandoned joy
and fearful adventure.
And in the intervals,
rest us in your still centre. Amen

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"Was Pentecost a miracle of speaking,
or one of hearing and understanding?"
The Journey with Jesus: Notes to Myself, Daniel B. Clendenin,

 

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Repent
Encounter
Devote

 

Sixth Sunday of Easter 13 May 2007

PEACE on EARTH
All must realise that there is no hope of putting an end to the building up of armaments, nor of reducing the present stocks, nor, still less--and this is the main point--of abolishing them altogether, unless the process is complete and thorough and unless it proceeds from inner conviction: unless, that is, everyone sincerely co-operated to banish the fear and anxious expectation of war with which men are oppressed. If this is to come about, the fundamental principle on which our present peace depends must be replaced by another, which declares that the true and solid peace of nations consists not in equality of arms but in mutual trust alone. We believe that this can be brought to pass, and we consider that, since it concerns a matter not only demanded by right reason but also eminently desirable in itself, it will prove to be the source of many benefits.
----Peace on Earth, #113, John XXIII, 1963

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God, our God, has blessed us

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Revelation is a book of contemplations that create Vision,
Paul’s journeys speak of the Movement that is birthed from Vision….
A Movement that leads to, and is supported by Hospitality.
“Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”
“Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid”
Vision, Movement and Hospitality are very much themes that we find in the Gospels, the Life & Word of Christ…. They might also be found in our actual (and/or Archetypal) relationship with “Mother”…….
In the celebration of Mother’s day, we celebrate Birth, Creativity and Life… we celebrate the Divine…. the creator and sustainer…..

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My life as an Anglican seemed to take on the fluid and graceful qualities associated with a dance.
Some ineffable quality of Anglican sensibilities encouraged me to engage in the business of Christian faith as something like an adventure, full of both surprise and risk and not finished yet. Becoming an Anglican was more like being seduced and falling in love than following a plan.
Jay Emerson Johnson

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Compassionate consumption is not about sacrificing or giving up things we need. It is about reawakening to the sacred need within and around us and celebrating this awareness in every action — and in every transaction.
— Julia Butterfly Hill quoted in Mindfulness in the Marketplace by Allan Hunt Badiner

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Mothering God, you gave me birth in the bright morning of this world.
Creator, source of every breath, you are my rain, my wind my sun.
Juliana of Norwich, ca. 1400.

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They will hunger no more, and thirst no more; the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat; for the Lamb at the centre of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes. [Rev 7:16]

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MOTHER…. that in me that is creative and nurturing….. Honour the mother in YOURSELF… seek the MOTHER in our community….and Give thanks for the DIVINE MOTHER of creation…..

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MOTHER…. my creative self, my centre of birthing…… I pray that I may bring to life the gift of the Divine that is forever birthed in me…

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MOTHER…. who is my mother? May we respond with Christ and see our Mother in the ones who nurture us…. the ones who Love us and may we GIVE ourselves as Mothers to those who come to us for nurture…..

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

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"God is both other than I am and also the same .... the source from which I continually flow. In my deep union with the mystery pf another person and on the mystery of my own being, what I find is God.'
(Harry Williams, quoted in Learning to Dance)

Celebrate the resurrection – as a vision of new life birthed from within yourself…. and we might discover that we are both womb and tomb… WE ARE that which holds onto to death and that which gives birth… hold in prayer those walking the Pilgrimage path in Spain…. By my reckoning they’ve covered about 240-300kms of the 800kms so far..

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.
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Honour Your MOTHER and your Father so that your days may be long….. (Exodus 20:12)
A mother’s love is iconic of inclusive and unconditional love - it is an obvious analogy or better still a glimpse of the reality of God…… Jesus uses language that could so easily be on the lips of any mother….Little children, I am with you only a little longer…..I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another…. Maternal advice for those growing up in a household of love….

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MOTHER…. The womb of my Being…. and the place of bringing to Birth…… The empty Tomb and the waters of Baptism…. Mother Church and Bearer of the Divine Child………
Mother is where Me and oTHER come together.

 

 

Fifth Sunday of Easter 6 May 2007

A Liturgical Note…….
we use the Greek language form for the Prayer for Divine Mercy….
Kyrie Eleison (Κψριε Ελεισον − Lord have Mercy)
Christe Eleison (Χηριστε Ελεισον − Christ have Mercy)
Kyrie Eleison (Κψριε Ελεισον − Lord have Mercy)
This ancient prayer is documented in Christian liturgy from 4th Century and gives us an opportunity to experience the ancient language from which much of our liturgy has grown.

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Dying & Rising - Giving & Receiving
Living a life worthy of our calling
Live to Give

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You will be baptised with the Holy Spirit

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By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
everyone
Religious fundamentalism of all kinds is creative of division.. and it is possible to read the Bible and readily find a ‘proof text’ to support divisions of many different kinds…… However, it is also (equally) clear that the Bible is a voice for unity and an honouring voice for diversity.
As we continue to follow ‘the early Church’ in the reading from Acts we find an insight into the movement from the exclusive “chosen ones” religion (still a contemporary theology in many churches) to the inclusive spirituality of the cosmic Christ - a cosmology reflected in today’s psalm and the book of Revelation.

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And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "See, the home of God is among mortals. She will dwell with them as their God; they will be her peoples, and God herself will be with them;
May creatures all abound in wealth and peace

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May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

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Our offering a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

"God is both other than I am and also the same .... the source from which I continually flow. In my deep union with the mystery pf another person and on the mystery of my own being, what I find is God.'
(Harry Williams, quoted in Learning to Dance)

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Celebrate As we continue in the Season of, and Spirit of, Easter for the 50 days that lead us to Pentecost – hold in prayer those walking the Pilgrimage path in Spain…. By my reckoning they’ve covered about 150-175kms of the 800kms so far..
Hospitality is one of the gifts that enable celebration… and we had a wonderful response last week to our request for helpers… The Morning Tea roster now has over 40 participants…

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

 

Fifth Sunday of Easter 6 May 2007

When launching a rocket into space… It has to reach an ‘escape velocity’ in order to successfully overcome Earth’s gravity
What is our escape velocity…
that which will enable us to leave the tomb?

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Dying & Rising - Giving & Receiving
Living a life worthy of our calling
Live to Give
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet
have come to believe

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I AM the Lord of the dance

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I am going fishing
We will go with you
Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach
The movement in the Gospel narrative… is very much the movement of the Community that emerged from the Easter Tomb….
A movement from the Self (I am) to finding the self as part of a whole (We will) and from that place recognising the Divine……
A new day dawns and the Divine stands waiting and watching…. the ebb and flow of the tide… or seeking opportunities to surf!

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Today is the ‘last Sunday’ for some of our Camino Pilgrims….. as they leave us to walk the ancient pilgrimage route to Santiago in Spain (800kms) so we walk with them on our Journey through the Season of Easter and the Mysterious Life of the Resurrection
We are Companions – Bread sharers

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"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope that I have that desire in all that I am doing." Thomas Merton, Thoughts in Solitude

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May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

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From last Sunday…….
The gospel must live. Easter’s not about a life that came to life years ago, we’ve got to draw into the present. When we draw it into the present we will rewrite it……

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

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Note for you Google Christopher Robin you get over 16,300,000 results

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When we dote upon the perfections and beauties of some one creature, we do not love that too much, but other things too little. (Thomas Traherne)
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Celebrate We continue in the Season of, and Spirit of, Easter for the 50 days that lead us to Pentecost.
Easter is a beginning, a resurrection and so an opportunity to renew your life orientation ….. As we reflect on the journey through Lent, the contemplation of the cross and the celebration of the new light we continue to allow new life to unfold, creating an Easter in this community that will give life to us individually and as community
We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.


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Easter + Pentecost + Christmas + Baptism + Marriage + Burial
These “Events” in the our community Life and our Church Life are all
Moments of Birth
They are more than Moments of Celebration as they are times in which we can intentionally and intently attend to our unfolding and our shaping and our becoming…..
During the season of Easter reflect and Participate in that which is being created within you and that which you create around you

 

 

 

Second Sunday of Easter 15 April 2007

When launching a rocket into space… It has to reach an ‘escape velocity’ in order to successfully overcome Earth’s gravity
What is our escape velocity…
that which will enable us to leave the tomb?

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Celebrate
The season of Easter for the 50 days that lead us to Pentecost.
Easter is not finished, it is begun….. As we reflect on the journey through Lent, the contemplation of the cross and the celebration of the new light we continue to allow new life to unfold, creating an Easter in this community that will give life to us individually and as community

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Thank You
As a community we encounter Easter with the ritual and symbolism that speaks an eternal truth…..
To those who created our worship, the choir, readers, and creators of our sacred space we acknowledge your gift….
To those who provide the support and the hospitality that we receive and offer as a community….. we acknowledge your gift……
And to each other, each and every one, we look with wonder at the possibility of new life and new direction that is birthed in the resurrection.

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Dying & Rising
Giving & Receiving
Living a life worthy of our calling
Live to Give
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet
have come to believe

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I AM the Lord of the dance

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"Christ has no body on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is to look out to the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now." Teresa of Avila

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Receive the Holy Spirit

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Our Easter celebration is like a wedding feast……. It is very much a lived and symbolic “life event’… It is also a Beginning.
As we look at the Cross, the Tomb and the Easter Egg we have an opportunity to see (and seek) that which is life giving to us…. We are birthed and wedded to the whole of creation……
Part of the divine dance that is sung into being through Easter…

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Dance me to the children who are asking to be born
Dance me through the curtains that our kisses have outworn
Raise a tent of shelter now, though every thread is torn
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic till I'm gathered safely in
Touch me with your naked hand or touch me with your glove
Dance me to the end of love
Leonard Cohen

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Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; walk in my ways
Before I formed you in the tomb I knew you; walk in my ways

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From the Easter Day sermon……

There is a very simple truth that we are forever as a culture complicit in denying: like Christ on Good Friday, we are not going to survive. ‘You will not survive.’ That simple truth can be the Palm Sunday of our life.

If it’s going to take any longer to get the tin foil off this egg, I’m going to choose the cross

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Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; walk in my ways
Before I formed you in the tomb I knew you; walk in my ways

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Easter + Pentecost + Christmas + Baptism + Marriage + Burial
These “Events” in the our community Life and our Church Life are all

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Moments of Birth
They are more than Moments of Celebration as they are times in which we can intentionally and intently attend to our unfolding and our shaping and our becoming…..
During the season of Easter reflect and Participate in that which is being created within you and that which you create around you

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Thank You and we give thanks for each other…… What a wonderful community we are and what a wonderful place to encounter Easter….. There are many activities and many individuals that work together to make Easter happen here at St Paul’s - Thank YOU… and may we continue as a people of the resurrection - seeing in each other the risen Christ.

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

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Our offering a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

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When we dote upon the perfections and beauties of some one creature, we do not love that too much, but other things too little. (Thomas Traherne)

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Lifting and loving you that I am not,
Though your body is my bone and blood,
I wonder at the maker who can be
Before I am and yet a child of me.
Sydney Carter

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I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

 

 

 


 

 

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Thank You
As a community we encounter Easter with the ritual and symbolism that speaks an eternal truth…..
To those who created our worship, the choir, readers, and creators of our sacred space we acknowledge your gift….
To those who provide the support and the hospitality that we receive and offer as a community….. we acknowledge your gift……
And to each other, each and every one, we look with wonder at the possibility of new life and new direction that is birthed in the resurrection.
Celebrate
The season of Easter for the 50 days that lead us to Pentecost.
Easter is not finished, it is begun….. As we reflect on the journey through Lent, the contemplation of the cross and the celebration of the new light we continue to allow new life to unfold, creating an Easter in this community that will give life to us individually and as community

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

"Christ has no body on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is to look out to the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now." Teresa of Avila

 

A Great Pleasure….
Archbishop Roger has sent a letter of thanks and affirmation following his time with us on Palm Sunday…. He very much appreciated the “warm welcome” that is St Paul’s
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Easter & the East End of the Church

In the next couple of weeks we will be initiating a number of actions to keep the East wall project on track……

Those who have already made payments (provided cheques) will have noticed that cheques have not yet been banked…. This is because we are still establishing procedures with the National Trust and also have to determine how we will be able to reconcile all individual payments for receipting purposes……..

We are establishing a “Fundraising Committee” to seek additional sources of funding and to continue to submit grant applications…..
And we recognise that these NEW initiatives will have to be outside of (and in addition to) our regular fundraising……

It is clear that we will need more “hands-on-deck” to keep our regular activities moving and to initiate the East End Building program, so please volunteer where you can and/or consider increasing your weekly offering so that we have some more flexibility in what is shaping up to be a creative process in the future shaping and direction of our community life….

It is auspicious timing, we are building anew, and living out the new life that is symbolised in the resurrection – an opportunity for us to realise our lives as a contemporary Acts of the Apostles……..

Lifting and loving you that I am not,
Though your body is my bone and blood,
I wonder at the maker who can be
Before I am and yet a child of me.
Sydney Carter

 

 

8 April Easter Day

Easter is not about Christ’s resurrection, it is not about the event that overcame death. We know that because Lazarus has already been called back into life. Easter is not about the resurrection of Christ, Easter is about our resurrection. Easter is about us, our participating in the divine activity and our being called back into life, the life that we were given before we were born.

1st April Passion Sunday/ Palm Sunday

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Our focus and attention is with Holy Week and the Great Three days of Easter…… A time to share and participate, a time to give and to receive,
a time to die and to rise to the promise of new life

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Dying & Rising
Giving & Receiving
Living a life worthy of our calling
Live to Give

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save me in your steadfast love

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We open ourselves to the Giving of Easter
and to the Gift of Life

Our offering a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.
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Behold and see,
we are beautiful.
Their beauty is their
confession of God.
Who made these beautiful
changing things - If not
the one who is himself
unchanging beauty?

St Augustine

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Our focus today is on the ‘triumphal Entry’ of our Lord into Jerusalem… it is another beginning and so we read the whole Gospel narrative of the passion. We have an opportunity to know again the story that we will encounter during Holy Week and Easter. As we journey together through Holy week, and in particular through the great three days, we have the opportunity to ‘see’ for ourselves in the same way that the disciples saw, and to understand the enormity of turning toward Jerusalem, and of facing that truth which the crowds do not yet see.
Glory to you Lord Jesus Christ

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

Between us there is but a narrow wall,
And by sheer chance, for it would take
merely a call from your lips or from mine
to break it down,
and that without a sound.
(R. M. Rilke, The Book of Hours)

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

Second Reading For the word of the Lord - Thanks be to God

From last Sunday…….
Easter is not about Christ’s resurrection, it is not about the event that overcame death. We know that because Lazarus has already been called back into life. Easter is not about the resurrection of Christ, Easter is about our resurrection. Easter is about us, our participating in the divine activity and our being called back into life, the life that we were given before we were born.

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When we dote upon the perfections and beauties of some one creature, we do not love that too much, but other things too little. (Thomas Traherne)

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

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"Christ has no body on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion is to look out to the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now." Teresa of Avila

 

 

Fifth Sunday after Lent 25 March 2007

I am about to do a new thing

 

I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
Prophetic words… When we replace the divine attribution (I AM) with ourselves (We are), so we can glimpse ourselves fulfilling our calling..
Made in the image of the Divine and trusted with the unfolding of the Divine creation
We are about to do a new thing; now it springs forth

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection

 

From Ashes to Easter
God’s love, the very essence of creation, is made manifest in Christ, the giving of the divine self to the whole, and wholeness of creation. This is the dynamic process that we are called to participate in, for in our participation is the realisation of our fullest humanity. As we approach Easter, we find ourselves once again drawn toward the truth of this mystery - it is in dying that we rise again to new life - it is in giving that we receive…. Prayer and action through our own self giving will enable us and empower us to be builders of a new Jerusalem in this community.

Create in me a clean heart, O God
I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection


May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!


The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love
Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

Fourth Sunday in Lent 18 March 2007

We rejoice in your Divine Love

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“There was a man who had two sons”
How often in the Holy Scriptures do we read about two people….. Adam&Eve, Cain&Abel, Mary&Martha, Sheep&Goats!!!!. Such stories illuminate our inner contradictions and conflicts and call us toward integration….. As we move toward Easter so too we move in the direction of the reality that we are ONE body…….
Refreshment Sunday is a Mid-lent break… a chance to Stop, Look and Listen, to be aware of the two(or more) directions that call to you in every moment… and to consider the “Where to from Here?”

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We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

++++++++++++++++++++++

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

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“on that very day, they ate the produce of the land”

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Lent Reflections
The Fourth Sunday in Lent is also known as Refreshment Sunday, Mothering Sunday, Laetare Sunday or Mid-Lent Sunday….. It was a time for a certain relaxation in Lenten disciplines, and a day off for servants to visit their mothers… and so we have the tradition of Simnel Cake to break the fast and the giving of flower posies to be taken as gifts to mothers…

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From Canon Doug Davies last Sunday…..

Lord, take me where you want me to go;
Let me meet who you want me to meet.
Tell me what you want me to say,
And keep me out of your way.

Fr Mychal Judge FDNY (d. September 11 2001)

 

Sun 11 Third Second Sunday in LENT

We welcome Rev’d canon Doug Davies as our Celebrant & Preacher today

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My soul thirsts for you

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Seek the LORD while he may be found, call upon him while he is near
Isaiah calls for us to LOOK and to be aware of what we are looking for… What is it that grabs our attention?
Lent is a time for us to refocus…… to become aware of the “temptations” of Life and the “fears” that invade our field of vision. Soon we will read about “turning our face toward Jerusalem” …….. we can only complete this re-orientation if we become aware of our present orientation.
Do Not Be Afraid
O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you

((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((

The Most Reverend Katherine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church of the United States of America, showed grace and humility in a meeting that must have been most difficult for her. Her reflections on Lent are worth pondering:
Traditionally the season of Lent has been one in which candidates prepared for baptism through prayer, fasting, and acts of mercy. This year, we might all constructively pray for greater awareness and understanding of the strangers around us, particularly those strangers whom we are not yet ready or able to call friends. That awareness can only come with our own greater investment in discovering the image of God in those strangers. It will require an attitude of humility, recognizing that we can not possibly know the fullness of God if we are unable to recognize his hand at work in unlikely persons or contexts. We might constructively fast from a desire to make assumptions about the motives of those strangers not yet become friends. And finally, we might constructively focus our passions on those in whom Christ is most evident -- the suffering, those on the margins, the forgotten, ignored, and overlooked of our world. And as we seek to serve that suffering servant made evident in our midst, we might reflect on what Jesus himself called us -- friends (John 15:15).

+++++++++++++++++

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

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If the soul is vigilant and withdraws from all distraction and abandons its own will, then the spirit of God invades it and it can conceive because it is free to do so.” Abba Cronius

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The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love

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Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

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Create in me a clean heart, O God

###################

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

Seek the LORD while he may be found, call upon him while he is near

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Seek the LORD while he may be found, call upon him while he is near

Lent Reflections

Temptations…….. More than just Chocolate!
Lent… … More than Giving up!
Lent…… The way forward – the way that leads to Easter

******************

Sentence for Contemplation

your steadfast love is better than life Psalm 63

*********************

What is the arrow of my life, what impels my life and in what direction?
Where do I find renewal in Love?
Where do I bring renewal in Love to others?

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I will bless you as long as I live, I will lift up my hands and call on your name

 

Sun 4 March Second Sunday in LENT

Your face, LORD, do I seek.

Today’s gospel provides us with some contemporary teaching…
The Gospel for Global Warming
unless you repent, you will all perish
The Gospel to bring peace in the Middle East
unless you repent, you will all perish
The Gospel to bring wealth & peace to all
unless you repent, you will all perish
The Gospel for YOU and ME
unless you repent, you will all perish

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Go forth on your Journey
For the benefit of the many
For the joy of the many
Out of compassion for the welfare
The Benefit and the Joy of all beings
Buddhist Blessing

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Create in me a clean heart, O God

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The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love
Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

*********************************

Lent an invitation to practice…..
Practices are how we pay attention to our relationship with God. Practice is the means whereby Christianity moves from being about beliefs to being a way of transformation. Practice changes us. The single most important personal practice is prayer in both of its classic forms: verbal prayer and the prayer of internal silence (commonly called contemplative prayer).
Marcus Borg “An Emerging Christian Way” in Schwartzentruber, M. (ed) (2006) The Emerging Christian Way. Canada:CopperHouse.

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What was asked of Jesus is what is asked of us, that we give up illusion, its false promises and its addicting inertia, and “come to our senses,” come to living bread.
Nora Gallager

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Where does my journey begin?

Be still, and know that I AM God… If we make places of stillness then at least we have the opportunity to know and to discover where we stand…..
Much of what we do (and perhaps what we become) is shaped by circumstance, and by the forces of “worldly gravity”.
Given a clean sheet and options, and a choice what would we construct as the form and routine that we find life giving?

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

 

Sun 25 February First Sunday in LENT

Temptations
These “temptations” once seemed too archaic for my modern mind, but as I’ve thought about them over the years, they have come to represent things all too familiar. Satan’s temptations represent magic, rescue, fame and power—they beckon me every day of my life. Just around the corner lies happiness, a new lover will provide lasting bliss, if I had what she has, then I would be. . .
These are the fantasies, the illusions, that suck out my vitality, that keep me from discovering my own rich reality. To come to terms with illusion is one of the great jobs of our lives: to discern what is fantasy and what is reality, what is dead and what is alive, what is a narcotic and what is food, what are stones and what is bread. It is dangerous, wrenching and unavoidable. In the desert, Jesus fought for his life.
What was asked of Jesus is what is asked of us, that we give up illusion, its false promises and its addicting inertia, and “come to our senses,” come to living bread.
Nora Gallager

Temptations…….. More than just Chocolate!

 

Create in me a clean heart, O God

 

Transfiguration 18 February 2007 Last Sunday after Epiphany

We welcome Rev’d Frank Sheehan as our Priest today.. Frank is the Chaplain at Christchurch Grammar School amongst many other things!

Holy is the Lord our God

 

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

And all of us… seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another

 

 

Sayings for Stillness - February 2007
The Fellowship of Contemplative Prayer has chosen this verse to contemplate in February. What a delight it is to hear the divine speak to each and to all with such affirmation
"You are precious in MY eyes, and honoured, and I love you"[Isaiah 43.4]

 

God is love, and is enfolding all the world in one embrace;
her unfailing grasp is holding every child of every race;
and when human hearts are breaking under sorrow's iron rod,
that same sorrow, that same aching wrings with pain the heart of God.

The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love

Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

Amazing Grace
Today more than 3,000 churches across the U.S. will sing this classic hymn, as well as pray for the end of modern day slavery. We complete our Sacred Meal with this Hymn in unity with all who seek an end to oppression.

Community – The Ebb and the Flow
The changing shape of community is like the ebb & flow of the waves on the beach…. In our community there are constant comings and goings.. even among those of us that don’t travel……. Sometimes we feel people “with us” and then they are gone… we feel alone….. Then once again the tide changes and the waters return bring new encounters and old encounters in new ways….As a Community in Christ, we are called to be “One Body” and ‘no longer tossed to and fro’….. so together we venture out from the beach and into deeper water…. no longer do we feel the ebb and flow of the tide but now we feel ourselves carried together by unseen currents……

May we learn to swim during the 40 days of Lent

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

 

 

Liturgical Changes in LENT
The crosses will be covered, removed or veiled. There will be fewer candles in the church, and no flowers in the sanctuary. We will omit the singing of the Gloria from our Sunday liturgy. We are quieter – more reflective…..
We still give thanks and celebrate our Lord’s living presence in the sacrament of the Eucharist - And at the same time we listen in our deepest prayers for that which is asked of us…. The gift that was given at Christmas desires and seeks the divine – that which is birthed in us seeks to find rest in God.

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

 

 

As our Government ducks and weaves and blames others, this adage from
China seems appropriate:
The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago; the second best time is now.
Gabby Dean

 

 

 

 

Sixth Sunday after Epiphany 11 February 2007

Creating our community through generosity and hospitality
As the Body of Christ we build together our Church community and we give shape to its future. Although “The Church” might be seen to be richly endowed with property - each parish exists and grows through its own financial endeavours. All of the expenses associated with our property, our priest and our ministry come from our giving and our fundraising. We do not receive money from the Church in order to maintain ourselves - we give to the Church so that we might become all that we seek in realising ourselves as the Body of Christ.

When people are laughing, they're generally not killing each other.  
~Alan Alda

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Love is the law of the Lord

________________________________________

I the LORD test the mind and search the heart, to give to all according to their ways, according to the fruit of their doings.
+++++++++

Each Week - The readings are talking about us, so they give us an opportunity to see and to reflect; they’re not going to give us any answers, but there are opportunities to find ourselves in relation to the divine and also in relation to our becoming: who are we, who am I, where do I stand, what am I called to be, to become?

+++++++++++++++++++++++

God is love, and is enfolding all the world in one embrace;
her unfailing grasp is holding every child of every race;
and when human hearts are breaking under sorrow's iron rod,
that same sorrow, that same aching wrings with pain the heart of God.
+++++++++++++

I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose.
~Woody Allen

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May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

++++++++++++++++

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.
++++++++++++++++++++++++

Climate Change
The reality slowly permeates those previously so self-sufficient they didn’t even notice……. The “Gift” of climate change is that it reveals a way forward…. maybe The way forward… a way that changes the world……
It is the same orientation revealed around 2000 years ago…
Our leaders will not bring about this new way forward….. This is a movement of the people – It is after all OUR responsibility…
It will require a redistribution of wealth……. and stunningly it will not be the rich that inherit the earth…. But it can be together we save the earth and each other….
Climate Change calls us to heed again the Teaching of Christ and not to create a new Church but rather to follow….. to live life as if the God in all life really matters.
worth a visit
http://www.avaaz.org/en/climate_action/cf.php

It is in Giving that we Receive
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.
__________________________

"For God so loVed the world,
     That He gAve
          His onLy
          BegottEn
              SoN
                  That whosoever
      Believes In Him
        Should Not perish,
      But have Everlasting life."


John 3:16

 

 

The most wasted of all days is one without laughter. ~e.e. cummings

 

Fifth Sunday after Epiphany 4 February 2007

Your Love, O God, is my purpose and my fulfilment

===========================

Creating our community through generosity and hospitality


As the Body of Christ we build together our Church community and we give shape to its future. Although “The Church” might be seen to be richly endowed with property - each parish exists and grows through its own financial endeavours. All of the expenses associated with our property, our priest and our ministry come from our giving and our fundraising. We do not receive money from the Church in order to maintain ourselves - we give to the Church so that we might become all that we seek in realising ourselves as the Body of Christ.
It is in Giving that we Receive

+++++++++++

"Here am I; send me!"
Knowing where we come from,
and where we are…
and then prepared to give of ourselves - to leave in order to find the Divine purpose that is our calling and our baptism…
I handed on to you…. what I in turn had received
Knowing that the Gift is given…. What gift?..... The Gift!
That which I have (we Have) and are called to share……
"Do not be afraid”
Knowing the power and the truth of this Divine expression is Faith.. and from our Faith we birth Hope and form that pace we create in Love
they left everything and followed him.
Well I might have guessed… There’s always a catch!

==========================

 

"For God so loVed the world,
     That He gAve
          His onLy
          BegottEn
              SoN
                  That whosoever
      Believes In Him
        Should Not perish,
      But have Everlasting life."


John 3:16

 

Fourth Sunday after Epiphany 28 January 2007

Creating our community through generosity and hospitality
As the Body of Christ we build together our Church community and we give shape to its future. Although “The Church” might be seen to be richly endowed with property - each parish exists and grows through its own financial endeavours. All of the expenses associated with our property, our priest and our ministry come from our giving and our fundraising. We do not receive money from the Church in order to maintain ourselves - we give to the Church so that we might become all that we seek in realising ourselves as the Body of Christ.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you;

A few simple words from the prophet Jeremiah… Open the possibility of a worldview(paradigm) that extends our understanding of Time….

For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known

Paul also has an understanding of ‘Time’ that differs from what we measure with clocks… He is not talking about Life and afetr0Life, rather he speaks of Life and being fully alive…

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God of Love, you confound the world’s wisdom
by giving your blessing to the lowly and pure in heart;
give us such a hunger and thirst for justice
and perseverance in striving for peace,
that in our words and deeds
the world may see the promise of all that is revealed
in your divine Word
The Gift of Love, the Gift of Light and the Gift of Life.. Amen
apba 534 modified

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I knew you, and before you were born

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

Noble are you, from the day of your birth
upon the holy hill:
radiant are you, even from the womb,
in the morning dew of your youth.
Psalm 110

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Seek your original face – the face you had before you were born
Zen Meditation

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God is love, and is enfolding all the world in one embrace;
her unfailing grasp is holding every child of every race;
and when human hearts are breaking under sorrow's iron rod,
that same sorrow, that same aching wrings with pain the heart of God.

****************************

Peace on Earth – Goodwill to All
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

 

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

________________________________________

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

___________________________________

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

"When we assumed office four years ago we stood on the edge of the precipice. Since then, we have taken a giant leap forward".
Prime Minister Tony Blair during a White House Toast on 5th Feb 1998.

 

 

 

Third Sunday after Epiphany 21 January 2007

Creating our community through generosity and hospitality
As the Body of Christ we build together our Church community and we give shape to its future. Although “The Church” might be seen to be richly endowed with property - each parish exists and grows through its own financial endeavours. All of the expenses associated with our property, our priest and our ministry come from our giving and our fundraising. We do not receive money from the Church in order to maintain ourselves - we give to the Church so that we might become all that we seek in realising ourselves as the Body of Christ.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Spirit of the Lord is upon us… and
the joy of the LORD is our strength
So it is with Christ….. and so too with all created ‘in Christ’.
Our becoming “The Body of Christ” is a Christian understanding of an eternal truth…… All is created in and through the Divine…..
And we must look beyond ourselves to find, and make real, our encounter with our Christ-likeness. In each and every relationship we experience and/or glimpse ‘Community’, and as we “strive for the greater gifts’, we have the opportunity and the capacity to shape the community that is the world in which we live, and the world we will give to our children…..

Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many.

))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Be Blessed
Go as far as your courage takes you,
for you cannot go beyond the reach of God.
Give as extravagantly as you may,
for you cannot spend all the riches of God.
Care as lavishly as you are able,
for you cannot exhaust the love of God.
Keep journeying as a friend,
for God will always be with you.
(Brian Hughes)
Love is a flame that burns in our heart,
Jesus has come and will never depart.

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Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is dark
Rabindranath Tagore
Thank you Joan Matthews for this quote
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We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

))))))))))))))))))))

HOPE - PEACE - JOY - LOVE
________________________________

Creating Tomorrow
Reaching out seeking life and light
Christmas is a revelation, it is a gift for all a gift of Love
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Second Sunday after Epiphany 14 January 2007

Residing in Paradise (or Wonderland!)

Together we hold in Love Dee Shelley (Ruth and family) whose twin brother Charles died last week.
“looking round at Tweedledum with great solemn eyes…. Tweedledee began instantly: `The sun was shining--' “


Born & Baptised - freely given - that we might freely Give
As the Body of Christ we build together our Church community and we give shape to its future. Although “The Church” might be seen to be richly endowed with property - each parish exists and grows through its own financial endeavours. All of the expenses associated with our property, our priest and our ministry come from our giving and our fundraising. We do not receive money from the Church in order to maintain ourselves - we give to the Church so that we might become all that we seek in realising ourselves as the Body of Christ.

========================

Last week we heard these words….
Thus says the Lord: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine...
you are precious in my sight, and honoured, and I love you.
This week we hear…..
You shall be called My Delight
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the LORD
For the LORD delights in you
Your God rejoice over you.
Perhaps this is an opportunity for us to get some sense of our real identity
And if our “hour has not yet come”, then we can, at least, proceed with expectation and with anticipation… For if we realise ourselves, our true identity, then we too might bring light and light where there is darkness.

 

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East End Inspiration…
I’ve just started reading “Building for the Future” which is the story of the re-building of “The Church of St Barnabas, Dulwich”, Clarissa’s church in England….. After a devastating fire the parish was faced with completely rebuilding the church…… It is great food for thought as we contemplate “rebuilding” our East Wall.

Robert Johnson, Inner Work, p. 26 (the Chapter called Alternative Realities: The World of Dreaming, the Realm of Imagination):
Don Quixote said he was seeking the ‘bread that is made from better-than-wheat”. He meant of course the Host, the bread that is eaten as part of the Christian ritual. The Host is made from wheat, yet it is also fashioned from the archetype, from the body of Christ, from spirit, from better-than-wheat,
In the same figurative sense I can say that Active Imagination is “realer-than-real”. It is not only real in the sense that it has a practical and concrete bearing on our physical lives, it also connects us to a world of forces that are superpersonal and transcentdent. It allows is to participate in shaping the flow of the principle streams of energy that join together in each of us to form the long-range pattern of our lives, our relationships and our attitudes. It affects us on level of realities that go deeper and affect us more profoundly, than any local event in our daily lives.
By comparison with these huge inner forces and the long range contours and directions they establish in us, the worries and decisions of daily life turn out to be mostly ripples on the surface of a huge river of life that moves slowly and inexorably toward its goal. Dreams and Active Imagination attune us to the larger vision of life, to the direction of that huge river……

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We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.
From last Sunday…….
Isaiah [is] giving us a wonderful opportunity to look at where we’re at: knowing where we stand in turn gives us an opportunity to become aware of our vision. If we know clearly where we stand and we know what it is we’re looking at, there’s a good chance that we’ll also have an awareness of where we’re going.

 

HOPE - PEACE - JOY - LOVE
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

 

Creating Tomorrow
Reaching out seeking life and light
Christmas is a revelation, it is a gift for all a gift of Love

++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Changing Shape of the Parish Church
On Tuesday this week I spent from 8.30am till 8pm taking down Christmas decorations, cleaning the hall, Sorting through and tidying the children’s craft supplies, rearranging the store room and clearing up the fair leftovers…
There was some help for the first three hours and then, after a coffee, there was time to reflect as I continued attending to the unending task of ‘maintaining’ our Church. Each and every week there are a number of ‘volunteers’ who contribute to our regular ‘maintenance’ work in many different ways…… Everything from keeping the books balanced, the gardens weed free, to brass cleaning and keeping the candles trimmed Etc Etc Etc…..
However in our modern culture we all experience an unprecedented busy-ness! And no longer is voluntary work an integral part of the average weekly routine. I too have a full-time job and voluntary work has to be undertaken alongside my other time commitments.
The Church is not alone in experiencing ‘fewer hands’…..

The estimated number of volunteers aged 18 years and over in 2000 was 4,395,600, representing 32% of the civilian population of the same age.
most volunteers contributed relatively few hours, while a minority worked for a large number of hours,
The median hours of voluntary work per week was 1.4
Australian Bureau of Statistics

If we can recognize the changing trends that form out parish life then we can also bring about initiatives to ‘go with the flow’. Recently a couple provided two donations beyond their regular giving that will provide for hall cleaning for one month….
This might be a model WE should consider as a community….
At home, more and more, we employ trades people to do our maintenance work… We might consider the same in our Parish Community, thereby recognizing both the changing world of Volunteer activity and also freeing up time for us to pursue more life giving activities…..
Always there will be opportunities for us to work together in building our community… And always we will benefit from the gifts that are brought into our community…..
If there is more to be done that we can fit in to our weekly schedule then can we afford to pay someone else to complete the tasks for us?

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Baptism of Our Lord 7 January 2007

I have called you by name, and I love you.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Thus says the Lord: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine...
you are precious in my sight, and honoured, and I love you.

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Love is a flame that burns in our heart,
Jesus has come and will never depart.

**********************************

HOPE - 2007 - PEACE - 2007 - JOY - 2007 - LOVE
Be blessed and be a blessing in the year ahead

###############################

Happy New Year
Let’s make it a good one
without any fear
(Lennon)

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love
Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

+++++++++++++++++++++++

Peace on Earth – Goodwill to All
We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HOPE - PEACE - JOY - LOVE

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Creating Tomorrow
Reaching out seeking life and light
Christmas is a revelation, it is a gift for all a gift of Love

)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

From Leunig, via Lucy, to welcome you to the beginning of the end of the year...
LIFE ON EARTH
Owls have no New Year's Eve. Neither can their lives be measured in days, for they are fowls of the night. They are never mentioned in New Year's honours lists - owls are born with honour. They make no New Year's resolutions - instinctive creatures do not need resolution. They take no hostages, no drugs, no holidays, no showers. Owls ignore art, religion, politics, sport, agriculture, media, waterskiing, music, history, gold, furniture, world travel, unionism, photo albums, identikit portraits, maps, telephones, charity, scandal, fashion, omens. Owls like trees, moonlight, sex, food, nests, hooting. Vote 1 Owls!

 

First Sunday after Christmas 31 December 2006

Happy New Year
Let’s make it a good one
without any fear
(Lennon)

+++++++++++++++++++

Love is a flame that burns in our heart,
Jesus has come and will never depart.

_______________________________

The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love
Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

January 6th Epiphany

Epiphany comes from the Greek word which means appear, it also means be revealed and give light. As we move into the New Year as a community we seek to make Christ present.


)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Peace on Earth – Goodwill to All

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

HOPE - PEACE - JOY - LOVE

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

In gratitude and humble trust
we bring our best to you,
not just to serve your cause
but share your love with neighbours too.
O God, who gave yourself to us
in Jesus Christ your Son,
help us to give ourselves each day
until life's work is done.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

 

Creating Tomorrow
Reaching out seeking life and light
Christmas is a revelation, it is a gift for all a gift of Love

##################################

2007 New Year’s Resolutions

Some biblical resolutions worth considering:
(Deu 30:19) “Choose life, so that you and your children may live"
(Job 42:6) "Repent in dust and ashes.""
(Psa 37:7) "Be still before the LORD and wait patiently”
(Mic 6:8) Act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God."
(Mat 3:8) "Produce fruit in keeping with repentance."
(Mat 6:33) "Seek first the kingdom and God’s righteousness.”
(Mat 22:37-39) “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, Love your neighbour as yourself."
(Mat 28:19) "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them
in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,"
(Mark 13:34-35) "Keep watch.”
(Rom 12:1) "Present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and
acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship”
(Rom 12:2)“.Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God--what is good and acceptable and perfect."
(2Cor 13:11)Put things in order agree with one another, live in peace.
(Phil 1:27)Live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ,
(James 3:18) "Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of
righteousness."
(James 4:8) "Come near to God and he will come near to you. ..and purify your hearts, you double-minded."
(2 Pet 3:11-12) "Live holy and godly lives as you look forward to
the day of God and speed its coming.”
(Rev 22:17) "Take the water of life as a gift."

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

What can I give him Poor as I am
If I were a shepherd I would give a lamb
If I were a wise man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can, I give him,
give my heart.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

 

Fourth Sunday Advent 24 December 2006>

ADVENT…. as we busy ourselves with preparations for Christmas so our attention is drawn toward gift GIVING……. And toward those we LOVE…
We also pause – in the busy-ness - and think of the new year, and of what Christmas might bring for us in terms of Gifts and New Life….
Please consider your GIFT, and yourself as GIFT, to our Community for together we are The Body of Christ

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

The Word moved over the Waters of Chaos to bring forth Life
The Word broke through the waters of Birth to bring forth Life
Mary God-bearer
the Word of Love revealed.

))))))))))))))

In November we looked at the narrative of three women….. Naomi, Ruth and Orpah - a story of the powerless, the dispossessed and those without the capacity to create. And yet it’s also a story of birth and it’s a foundational story, it’s an Easter story, it is a Christmas story.
Today we look at the narrative of Mary and can readily acknowledge the same observation… a story of birth and it’s a foundational story, it’s an Easter story, it is a Christmas story.
Today we are invited to look at our own story – My story and My place in Our story… for own story is told in the story of Mary, as it is told in the stories of the previous narratives…..
We too are called to bear the Divine and Birth the Divine in response to God’s creative calling in Love.

___________________

As our Advent pilgrimage draws to completion,
grant us the courage to share your love.
Love for the unexpected challenge in our lives,
Love for the vulnerable one in our midst.
Love for the presence of God in all creation.

++++++++++++

The Prayer Tree
The Christmas Bowl
My Christmas giving to St Paul’s
Me… and my being a Gift to this Community

))))))))))

Water – the movement of life, the tide of being

&&&&&&&&&&
O KEY OF DAVID, and Sceptre of the House of Israel, who opens and no one shuts, who shuts and no one opens: COME, and bring forth the captive from the prison, the one who sits in darkness and in the shadow of death. Amen.

HOPE - PEACE - JOY - LOVE
++++++++++++++

The Divine Gift of Life, Light and Love
Our offering - a reflection of the gifts we have received
and an orientation of our giving to the life of this community.

Water - the vital force bringing birth from dust

+++++++++++++++++
O KING OF THE GENTILES and their desired One, the Cornerstone that makes both one: COME, and deliver us, whom you formed out of the dust of the earth. Amen.

[Luke 1:47-55]

_____________________

Peace on Earth – Goodwill to All

++++++++++++++++

For Jesus is bringing God’s love to our earth.

The Joy of Shapes that Dance'
A river somehow illuminates the beauty of time. In a river, past, present and future coalesce in the one passionate flowing. A river is continuous flow of future. Though it flows through landscape, it never divides into 'sooner' or 'later' or 'before' or 'after'. The river is a miracle of presence: each place it flows through is the place it is. Though a river maintains a line of direction, it somehow turns still, fixed space into the embrace of a flowing circle of presence. It gives itself to the urgency of becoming but never at the cost of disowning its origin. It engages the world while belonging secretly within its memory and still strives forward into the endless flow of emerging possibility. (p. 124)

Unlike the land, which is fixed in one place, the sea manifests freedom: she is the primal dance, a dance that has always moved to its own music. The wild divinity of the ocean infuses the shore with ancient sound. Who can tell what secrets she searches from the shoreline? What news she whispers to the shore in the gossip of urgent wavelets? This is a primal conversation. The place where absolute change rushes against still permanence, where the urgency of Becoming confronts the stillness of Being, where restless desire meets the silence and serenity of stone.
From John O' Donohue's "Divine Beauty: The Invisible Embrace", in the
chapter with the delightful title, 'The Joy of Shapes that Dance'.

_))))))))))))

Second Sunday in Advent 10 December 2006

ADVENT Liturgy

We invite young ones from the community to join in lighting the ADVENT Candle – and together Pray for the HOPE that it represents

A candle is burning, a flame warm and bright,
A candle of Hope in December’s dark night.
While angels sing blessings from heaven’s starry sky,
Our hearts we prepare now, for Jesus is nigh.

A candle is burning, a candle of Peace,
A candle to signal that conflict must cease.
For Jesus is coming to show us the way,
A message of peace humbly laid in the hay.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

ADVENT…. as we busy ourselves with preparations for Christmas so our attention is drawn toward gift GIVING……. And toward those we LOVE…
We also pause – in the busy-ness - and think of the new year, and of what Christmas might bring for us in terms of Gifts and New Life….
Please consider your GIFT, and yourself as GIFT, to our Community for together we are The Body of Christ

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

O come, o come Emmanuel

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
John the Baptist, the forerunner who brings us news of the coming of Christ.
He indicates to us, and provides an orientation for us… so clear was his voice he was himself mistaken as the messiah.
The voice of one crying out in the wilderness
This is the voice of the Church!
This is the voice we seek to speak and to sing
Our calling, our voice is not the voice of our culture…. It is the prophetic voice that echoes the Word of Creation…. We are called t ospeak out of the Wilderness of our everyday culture and to be bringer of Good News…. Our voice, the voice the Church is called to sing, is the voice of creation

 

)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

+++++++++++++++

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

)))))))))))))))))))))

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Peace on Earth – Goodwill to All

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

ADVENT 2006
EarthPeace EarthPeace EarthPeace EarthPeace

A New Year Begins – New Life is Given Birth

We light a candle, the flame of our deepest desire ,
as we await the hour of your coming, O Divine Child
Every hour is the hour of your challenge
Every hour is the moment of expectation and hope
Before the advent light, our light of hope and light of Peace
We place ourselves as an emptiness to be filled with your divine fullness
Waiting for one Child We wait for you
++++++++++++++++++++++

Earth - in which our birth, all birth, has its roots

First Sunday in Advent 3 December 2006

ADVENT Liturgy

We invite young ones from the community to join in lighting the ADVENT Candle – and together Pray for the HOPE that it represents

A candle is burning, a flame warm and bright,
A candle of Hope in December’s dark night.
While angels sing blessings from heaven’s starry sky,
Our hearts we prepare now, for Jesus is nigh.

We acknowledge our oneness as we join in the Advent anthem that names the coming of the Divine

O come, o come Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lowly exile here, until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

 

ADVENT…. as we busy ourselves with preparations for Christmas so our attention is drawn toward gift GIVING……. And toward those we LOVE…
We also pause – in the busy-ness - and think of the new year, and of what Christmas might bring for us in terms of Gifts and New Life….
Please consider your GIFT, and yourself as GIFT, to our Community for together we are The Body of Christ

 

The Promise of Advent
Stir up our hearts, we beseech you, to prepare ourselves to receive your Son. When he comes and knocks, may he find us not sleeping in sin, but awake to righteousness, ceaselessly rejoicing in his love. May our hearts and minds be so purified, that we may be ready to receive his promise of eternal life.
The Gelasian Sacramentary c.500

 

We meditate on the glory of the Creator;
Who has created the Universe;
Who is worthy of Worship;
Who is the embodiment of Knowledge and Light;
Who is the remover of all Sin and Ignorance;
May The Divine enlighten our Intellect.

 

 

May creatures all abound in wealth and peace;
May all be blessed with peace always;
All creatures weak or strong,
All creatures great and small;
Creatures seen or unseen,
Dwelling afar or near.
born or awaiting birth,
May all be blessed with peace!

We participate in the birth of tomorrow: not just in the day after today but in the birth of every tomorrow.

 

A reflection from Graham Kershaw that ‘collects’ the energy of those who have been looking at restoration of the East Wall

O
ver a hundred years ago, work was begun at St. Paul's, Beaconsfield, to build in glass and stone a living, enduring heart for the community. Interrupted by war and depression, the church was never completed. A century later, that heritage still lives on, cared for by generations of parishioners, more precious, more loved than ever, but showing the effects of time where the stone ran out all those years ago - a potent symbol of potential yet to be realised in the community and society at large - a work still in progress.

We are dedicated to the preservation and maintenance of this, our common heritage. But its future lies not only in restoration and repair, but in reinvention, in the resuscitation of the optimism which first laid its foundations. We believe the time has come to build again, to carry on the work begun so long ago. We have a vision of a refuge in difficult times and an inspiration in times of celebration, a beautiful, nurturing and stimulating realm of shared experiences, dreams and hopes, where the work of past generations can be re-imagined to serve the needs and aspirations of generations yet to come, facing new challenges.

We look to others in the community to share this challenge, to take up this rare opportunity to make a lasting contribution to the community. With leadership and co-operation, we can ensure that a century from now St. Paul's will still be a place where visions of a better future can germinate amongst lavender, glass and stone, part of a living, growing community sustained by faith and hope, and open to all.'

 

ADVENT 2006
A New Year Begins – New Life is Given Birth

 

This is my song, O God of all the nations,
A song of peace for lands afar and mine;
This is my home, the country where my heart is,
These are my hopes, my dreams my Holy Shine,
But other hearts in other lands lie beating
With hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.

My country's skies are bluer than the ocean,
and sunlight beams on clover leaf and pine
But other lands have sunlight too, and clover
And skies are everywhere as blue as mine;
O hear my song, O God of all the nations
A song of Peace for their lands and for mine