Following new guidance by the Diocese, live-streaming from the Church is at the moment not allowed. Today's prayers, readings and reflections are available below.
TRINITY II SUNDAY 21st JUNE
Hark my soul, it is the Lord;
'tis thy Saviour, hear his word;
Jesus speaks, and speaks to thee,
Say, poor sinner, lov'st thou me?
I delivered thee when bound,
and, when wounded, healed thy wound;
sought thee wandering, set thee right,
turned thy darkness into light.
Can a woman's tender care
cease towards the child she bare?
Yes, she may forgetful be,
yet will I remember thee.
Mine is an unchanging love,
higher than the heights above,
deeper than the depths beneath,
free and faithful, strong as death.
Thou shalt see my glory soon,
when the work of grace is done;
partner of my throne shalt be:
say , poor sinner, lov'st thou me.
Lord it is my chief complaint
that my love is weak and faint;
yet I love thee, and adore;
O for grace to love thee more.
Lord you have taught us that all our doings without love are nothing worth: send your Holy Spirit and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of love, the true bond of peace and of all virtues, without which whoever lives is counted dead before you.
Grant this for your Son Jesus Christ's sake, who is alive and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
Jeremiah 20:7-13, Romans 6:1b-11, Matthew 10:24-39.
Lord give to your Church grace fearlessly to proclaim the Gospel and send your strength to overcome our weakness.
Have mercy on the weak and vulnerable and heal communities which are divided and broken.
We pray for the sick and for those who care for them and wait anxiously over them. We pray especially for Charlie Chesser, Otto Lein and William Scott.
May the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace and rise in glory.
"Do not be afraid." Matthew 10:21
I still have a vivid memory of one of the first visits I ever paid to Christ Church School, many years ago now. I wandered into an art class. The children were busy creating their versions of Van Gogh's painting of sunflowers. Most of the children were concentrating hard, brows furrowed and tongues stuck out. I noticed one child apparently doing nothing and looking rather blank. I thought I would offer to help. "Not started yet," I said,"Got any ideas?" She looked at me rather disdainfully and said, "I am just deciding whether to paint in portrait or landscape." I had been put in my place!.We rightly value the cardboard and paper creations children bring home from school. In their creative activities children have something in common with artists and musicians. Materials are taken and turned into something new and separate but what is made has at the same time a lot of the maker in it. When we have children a similar process takes place. Yet we are not only created by our parents, but by God. He creates us as distinct individuals and he has also made us in his own image.
It is because we are the work of God's hands, made in his image, that we are of so much value to him. In our own lives there is some part of us in whatever we do, whatever we make, whatever we say. In a sense we are creators of each day given to us;.we can choose how we use its raw material, choose whether to make God more or less visible. In the child's delight in its handiwork, in our caring for what we do, we reflect God's pleasure in us and in his world.
A sparrow - small, brown and seemingly insignificant - but Jesus says that it is known to God and so precious that not one dies without God's knowledge. The very hairs on your head are numbered. And yet we sometimes behave as if God, if we think of him at all, is somehow distant and even judgemental. But he cares for us more than we care for ourselves. He will never loose interest or take away the safety and security of his love.
Small wonder that knowing of this love Christ reassures us. "Do not be afraid." Do not be afraid of those who can hurt you materially, they cannot hurt your soul. Do not be afraid of proclaiming my message from the housetops. Do not be afraid of the truth.
The disciples had already heard Christ speak of persecution and suffering. In the early church an open proclamation of Jesus' Messiahship could result in death. Most of those close to Christ would share with him a violent death. Christian discipleship is not an easy path to follow, it is not a comfortable way of life.We often have to face hostility or indifference from those around us and from within doubts and perplexities and the temptation to give up. It took only the taunts of a servant girl to frighten Peter, "Prince of the Apostles", and make him disown his master. We may feel pressure to do the same.
Our children need a good deal of help and encouragement to grow in the faith from both their parents and from the Church.
Those of us who are older need to remember Jesus' words, "Do not be afraid."