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Easter 2 – Breath and life

On the second Sunday of Easter (or the eighth day of Easter), the church always offers before us John 20 for our Gospel reflection, commemorating both the first appearance of Jesus to the church on Easter Sunday, and then his second appearance eight days later, on the...

Resurrection Is (Easter Sunday)

One of the limitations of celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus is that for so many people in the church, they still operate with a tri-part understanding of creation, even though they know that this is not the case in the physical universe or according to the laws of...

A Resurrection Worldview (Easter Vigil)

This year our parish celebrated the Easter Vigil early on Easter Sunday morning (beginning at 5am) as a Dawn Mass, rather than early in the evening on Holy Saturday night as has been the custom. In part this was because I never liked the fact that during the Easter...

The Gospel of Good Friday

Although we read the Passion story last Sunday during the Mass of Palm Sunday, that Gospel is always taken from one of the three Synoptic Gospel accounts, depending on the liturgical year. But on Good Friday, there can only be one Gospel that will be our guide and...

Passover Slave (Holy Thursday)

We begin these sacred days of Easter with this encounter on the eve of Passover - as we remember the meal that Jesus celebrated with his disciples. The Gospel of John - which is our primary companion over these days - does not provide details about the elements of the...

The Gaze of the Crucified One

This week we were confronted by those horrifying images that came out of Syria of the chemical weapon attack on innocent civilians. This rightly appalled us and provoked a response. Yet, these horrors at one level are nothing new. We see this across human history, and...

Revolution 5 – The Revolution Continues

The early Christian message is not well summarised by saying that Jesus died so that we can go to heaven. That way of looking at the gospel and mission both shrinks and distorts what the Bible actually teaches. It ignores Jesus’s claim to be launching God’s kingdom...

The Revolution 4 – Atonement

When Jesus knew that it was his time to go up to Jerusalem to face the passion and death - why did he choose the festival of Passover? Surely if his actions were going to bring about the ultimate covering over of sins, he would choose the great festival of expiation -...

The Revolution 3 – New Goal, New Humanity

Paul is often accused of being dry and clinical in his writing - but sometimes he can open us to the most beautiful and stunning statements about the love and mercy of our God. The second reading today - from Romans 5 - provides us with such a statement. He tells us:...

The Revolution 2 – Covenant and Cross

When Jesus told the disciples that he was going to suffer and die, or as he does in today's Gospel, tell them not to speak of the transfiguration vision until after he had been raised from the dead - what was the story that they had in their heads when they would...

The Revolution 1 – Why did Jesus die?

As we enter into this new season of Lent, the Church offers us very evocative readings to guide our journey. But it seems that there is an even more fundamental truth that lies at the heart of the Christian faith - which is the question of "Why did Jesus die on the...

Temple builders

The first question that Paul addresses today in I Corinthians 3 is whether he in fact is the founder of Christianity. It had been commonly claimed that Jesus only ever intended to proclaim the coming of the kingdom of God by reforming Judaism, not to begin a new...

Spirit Wisdom

Although it may seem that St Paul is having an each-way bet today, he is not. He says that although the Cross is foolishness for the wise and a stumbling block for the Jewish people, there is still a wisdom that is at work here - but it is not a wisdom that is...

Proclaim Christ Crucified

When pondering the nature of God, Paul could have spoken about the various ways that God had been revealed across the centuries, the different qualities of God, the effects of God, or the ways to encounter God, based on philosophy or rhetoric - common in Greek...

Somebody boast

The liturgy presents us with the final section (26-31) of chapter one of First Corinthians today, which means we have jumped over verses 18-25 which provides the essential context of the passage. Paul speaks in a powerful rhetoric about the cross - ironically telling...