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Advent

Today, we begin a new liturgical year, the year of Mark, and we enter into the rich and ancient season of Advent.  For most Australians, Advent passes virtually unnoticed, as the celebration of what has become the very commercial feast of Christmas dominates everyone’s consciousness.  Yet taking time to immerse ourselves in Advent offers us an opportunity …

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Risk and Reward

What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail? You would try something pretty risky, right? After all, if you knew you wouldn’t fail, why try something easy? What risky thing would you do? Would you write a novel or sail around the world? Would you tell someone, ‘I love you,’ or would you …

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All Saints

Today as we celebrate the Feast of All Saints, our patronal festival, we welcome our Diocesan Bishop, Mark, who will share this important day in our parish life with us, and preach.  Over the past six months as the reality of COVID hit, we were forced to worship online, separated by distance, and we have had …

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Love, love, love

It has been sad to watch protests against public health lockdowns in Victoria and in other parts of the world, where people are loudly protesting their ‘rights’.  Today’s Gospel lies at the heart of the Christian way of being in the world, and here Jesus reminds us that my ‘rights’ must always be balanced against the …

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No worries

Today we consider another of Matthew’s ‘Kingdom of God’ parables.  Even though on the surface this parable is a bit perplexing, with guests being welcomed and excluded seemingly at random, it does suggest that everyone is invited to be part of God’s kingdom.  No-one is excluded, and the invitation is free.  No-one is accepted simply on the basis …

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Dealing with Evil

These few chapters of Matthew are fierce.  In them we find Jesus kicking over tables in the Temple, cursing a fig tree for not bearing fruit, and in this parable today, attacking the Pharisees as ‘bad tenants.’  It’s hard to imagine tenants behaving so outrageously, or an absentee landowner dealing with his renters in the way …

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God Economics

As I write, the signs that Spring has arrived are just outside my window.  The sun is out, the sky is blue, the trees are full of blossom, and the days are starting to get warmer.  After such a difficult and anxious winter, the signs of hope around us spring up.  Although we can’t see into the future …

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Forgive

Sometimes we need to be careful what we pray for.  Every time we say the Lord’s Prayer, even if we rattle off the words glibly and thoughtlessly, we pray for the strength to forgive others.  We know that we want God’s forgiveness – but do we realise that the caveat on that prayer is that we actually …

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Pride and Prejudice

Today we are eyewitnesses to a very interesting exchange between Jesus and a Canaanite woman.  She was a despised foreigner, a Gentile, and a woman, a person a good Jew would not normally engage with in any way, or on any level.  She would have known this, and she would probably have expected Jesus’ initial reaction to …

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Walking on Water

Today’s Collect asks God for the strength to trust when all seems hopeless and lost, a theme we find in both the Old Testament story and in the Gospel.   Peter’s faith is challenged when he steps out of the boat into the stormy waters.   The story tells us that rather than recklessly jumping out, he’s called …

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