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Faith >

Sunday’s readings

Readings: 2nd Sunday of Easter

IT WAS hardly a hotbed of faith which Jesus invaded when he bypassed the locked door that expressed the disciples' fear. No wonder his first words were the Jewish greeting of peace. Only when he showed them his hands and side did the disciples rejoice at seeing him.

Readings: Good Friday

Each Good Friday, Isaiah, Hebrews, and John leave us marvelling at God's wisdom in bringing victory out of horrific cruelty, destroying the power of death. Isaiah's litany of the servant's suffering ends with his making many righteous, and dividing the spoil with the strong. He prospers and is exalted, startling the powerful with the scars of his suffering.

Readings: Easter Day

WHAT happened at dawn on the first day of the week was not instant and overwhelming joy for those involved. It provoked yet more perplexity. Mary Magdalene and another Mary went to see the tomb. Suddenly, there was the second earthquake in three days, and an angel, looking like lightning and snow at the same time, descended from heaven and sat on the stone. It was holy commotion yet again.

Readings: Palm Sunday

A VISITOR at Durham Cathedral recently asked for directions to the 12.30 service of "holy commotion". It seems a rather apt phrase when we hear the Passion narrative read, since we take bread and wine in the name of one who, according to Matthew, triggered commotions: his birth caused Jerusalem to be frightened, and his riding into Jerusalem threw the whole city into turmoil.

Readings: 5th Sunday of Lent

When working as a hospital chaplain, I will never forget the screams of a young girl, taken by her family to see her father who had just died from a horrible cancer. For people who had seen his suffering, death was a relief, but, for her, a scream of anguish was the only appropriate response. Death is real.

Readings: 4th Sunday of lent

YEARS ago, visiting the Mount of Beatitudes, our peace was suddenly and rudely interrupted, as a screaming, diminutive nun waving a broomstick chased a woman from the church. Her offence? Wearing a sleeveless dress. Someone commented ironically: "The Lord looks on the outward appearance, not on the heart."

Readings: 3rd Sunday of Lent

We all face situations that seem interminable, and threaten to be the death of us. Whether it is the depression that will not lift, the family whom we dread facing, the addiction we cannot break, the relationship that traps us, or the grief that overwhelms us, at times we end up in the desert. The question is: how do we respond? 

Readings: 2nd Sunday of Lent

It is never clear how certain or public Nicodemus's following of Jesus was. Perhaps he never committed himself wholeheartedly, or perhaps, like many people around the world today, his commitment was secure, but he had to be cautious about how public he made it. Whatever the ultimate outcome, Jesus tried to nurture and enlarge that faith rather than condemn him.

Readings: 1st Sunday of Lent

How did Jesus resist temptation? Where is the hope for us as we follow him? 

Sunday next before Lent

ON THIS final Sunday before Lent, the collect prays us into a world where suffering and glory belong together, both for Jesus and for us. We pray to be conformed to the image of Christ; to become more Christ-like.

Beasts and all cattle: worms and feathered fowls

EACH passage this week asks to be read out loud rather than silently, because hearing it helps to articulate its repeated internal theme.

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Wed 23 Apr 14 @ 13:49
Eight arguments over whether the UK is a Christian country http://t.co/CZFXvZYlAS

Wed 23 Apr 14 @ 13:20
House of Bishops has announced plan to double number of BME senior clergy. Read about history of CofE + immigrants: http://t.co/6Pv4ShFh1I