Years ago, a Norfolk teenager won nearly ten million pounds on the National Lottery. He turned up to collect his winnings wearing an electronic tag, for he had been in a Young Offenders' Institution for two months and the tag was part of his sentence for drunken and unruly behaviour. And he admitted to other rather more crominal activities in the past. He claimed to have won this money with his first ever lottery ticket.
Jack had a huge plastic bag full of conkers. He spent the whole of one evening with a skewer boring a hole in the conkers and threading each one on a piece of string. When he went to school next day he spent every spare minute in the playground playing conkers with his friends. He lost quite a few to start with, but he soon became very proficient, and watched with delight as his opponents' conkers gradually smashed and disappeared.
Dominic Owl lived in a big, old oak tree, right in the middle of the wood. He hadn't lived there very long, because he was only a baby owl. He loved that big old oak tree, and best all he loved to perch on its broadest branch and watch his mother as she skimmed silently over the tree tops searching the ground for Dominic's next meal.
The Alpha course raises strong emotions, not least amongst clergy. Alpha is a course on basic Christianity, designed for non-believers and devised by Holy Trinity Church in Brompton, London. It started in a small way back in the seventies and eighties, but when a young curate, the Revd. Nicky Gumbel, joined the staff of Holy Trinity, he revamped the course and it took off in a big way.
Amanda Squirrel hummed as she put the finishing touches to the icing on the huge cake she had made earlier that day. "Will this do?" she asked her friend Hetty Hedgehog.
"Do?" gasped Hetty. "Why, it's the best and biggest cake I've ever seen!"
Amanda had been planning this party for months. All the invitations had been sent out weeks ago, and Amanda and Hetty had been hard at it for several days, preparing the food and sweeping and cleaning and decorating the animal hall.
The psychologist Scott
Peck begins his famous best-seller, "The Road Less Travelled" with the immortal
words, "Life is difficult." That simple statement has been a revelation to many
of Scott Peck's readers, for it has brought them a sense of freedom. They no
longer have to struggle with feelings of guilt and inadequacy just because
nothing in their lives runs smoothly. Once they can accept that life is
difficult, they are free to make of it the best that they can without worrying
too much about how awful their life is.
Jesus said, "The one to whom little is forgiven, loves little." In
our worship today, let us ask God to make us fully aware of our need for
forgiveness, so that we may learn to forgive others with love which
Invitation to Confession:
Jesus, we often think we're quite good people, especially
compared to many others. Lord, have mercy.
Jesus refused to answer Pilate or any of his accusers, even
through he knew they would make him suffer. In our worship today, we consider
why our integrity is so important that we might even be prepared to suffer for
Invitation to Confession:
Jesus, when I'm tempted to lie to save my own
skin, Lord, have mercy.
Jesus, when I'm tempted to lie save other people's
feelings, Christ, have mercy.
I sometimes catch those programmes on television which offer
people an evening out with the celebrity of their choice, or at least, ask
people who they would choose if they could have that choice. Film stars and pop
stars usually come at the top of the list, closely followed by royalty,
especially the younger and handsomer members of the royal family.
see some of the choices I find myself shuddering and wonder what on earth
people can see in such a person. But I suppose the choice is usually based on
Mary Austin Christopher Keating Dean Feldmeyer Ron Love George Reed
The final Sunday of the church year -- known as Christ the King Sunday -- celebrates the Reign of Christ in the world and our station as his loyal subjects and sheep. But as team member Mary Austin points out in the next installment of The Immediate Word, that imagery seems rather quaint in a modern world that has little experience with either kings or shepherds.
Reign of Christ or Christ the King Sunday lends itself to the narration of stories as to how people experience God and God’s kingdom breaking into our world. Karen D. Scheib’s book titled Pastoral Care: Telling Stories of our Lives (Abingdon Press, 2016) makes some practical sense. “Narrative identity provides a means to hold together our various beliefs, hopes, dreams, and roles in a coherent way.
I used to know a man who claimed to be able to make himself invisible. I regarded his claim as complete nonsense, until I saw him in the bank several weeks later. Or rather, almost failed to see him! I was impatiently waiting in a queue to be served, but he stood at the counter so quietly and so still that he almost melted into the background. If I hadn't known him, I don't think I would have noticed him.
The church calendar says that this is the day on which we celebrate the festival of Christ the King. That makes this a very important day. The idea of the kingdom of God, or the kingdom of Christ, is one of the most important biblical and theological explanations of the meaning of the Christian faith. It probably represents the very heart of Jesus' own teachings.