|Pen and Ink Reflections||
myths, memories and making peace
One of things I’m thankful for in my years of ministry is the memorial cross I helped install in the Warriors Chapel in St Luke’s Church Toowoomba. It remembers the battle of Meewah, otherwise known as One Tree Hill, or Table Top Mountain. This was part of the devastating Frontier Wars in this country. It was led, on the Aboriginal side, by the great warrior Multuggerah and part of deep, and extraordinary skilled, schemes of resistance. It is intimately connected to the continuing debilitating impact of colonial dispossession. Without remembering and reconciling, such deep wounds endure. Yet so little of this story is named or reflected upon. In contrast, on this day (25 April), the awful pain of the Gallipoli landings is recalled: often, in recent years, with exceptional noise and attention. Why is it that some stories become enduring, and even ever enlarged, myths, whilst others, no less historically significant, are hidden or left to fester? How do we best make peace with our past? And how do myths and memories of faith distract or assist?
when God was a fish?
‘So long and thanks for all the fish!’ – that is the message of the dolphins as the world ends, in the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. In contrast, the new creation in today’s Resurrection story (Luke 24:36b-48) begins with fish. The terrified disciples think they have seen a ghost. Yet, even more startlingly, Jesus asks for something to eat. They give him what they have – some broiled fish – and Jesus takes it and eats it in their presence. Not for the first time, God and fish are all mixed up together. What is going on?...
It is so shockingly physical, isn’t it? As we reflected last week, the resurrection is profoundly, and intimately, about bodies. These bodies however are not just human but of all kinds. Even fish bodies. Imagine. Imagine the sounds of the crackling fire, and the sight and feel of the fish, and not least its smell and taste. It is deeply visceral, isn’t it? And it is so evocative of all the other times in which Jesus has been with others, with fish as central: and not least all those fishing trips, and feeding of the thousands. We are used to thinking of sacraments as visible signs and vehicles of God’s grace and presence. We think, not least of bread and wine, water and light. However fish are also key: creatures in many cultures as vital as bread and wine for sustenance and survival; fluid seekers and expressions of water and light...
praying the body electric
The word ‘Emerging’ has come to the fore recently. It expresses well where many people of spirit are in our lives and faith journeys. Emerging is also a central aspect of our world as a whole at present, as we engage with the uncertainties and opportunities of possible futures with and beyond Covid-19. Meanwhile, more broadly, Emergence is a powerful theme in much contemporary thinking about science, society and philosophy. Lively questions therefore surround, and stir in us. What kind of a world is it in which we live, and might like to live? What is coming into being, not least in spirituality? What difference might these things mean to our lives and our faith journeys? In other words, to reconnect with the Christian story, what, again, does Resurrection mean for us? For, as our Gospel reading today once more reminds us, Resurrection is an invitation into a more mysterious future, in the power of Love. Consequently, in the next few weeks of our Easter season, let us enter into into deeper reflection on what is emerging in us, and in our journeys with others. We begin with the body. Our Gospel today speaks of Thomas, with the other disciples, trying to make sense of Christ’s risen body. What difference did that make to them? What might the resurrection of the body mean to us?...
what is Resurrection for us?
a shared reflection and invitation by Josephine Inkpin (J) & Penny Jones (P)...
(P) We‘ve just heard two different accounts of Jesus’ resurrection, haven’t we?! (Mark 16.1-8 and John 20.1-18) So what we do make of that – and all the other resurrection accounts which cannot be simply conflated? More importantly, what does Resurrection mean to us – to you, to me, to all of us together? That is not a question which can be answered in a few minutes of Reflection. Jo and I have therefore decided to open up a dialogue, which we hope will encourage us all to share in the days ahead. For one thing which is absolutely clear about Jesus’ resurrection of is that it is related through a multiplicity of stories and symbols. These come from different people and biblical outlooks and they thereby also invite us to share our own experiences and insights into Resurrection. For Resurrection is an extraordinary reality we celebrate today. Yet it is not a simple ‘fact’, is it Jo? Isn’t it rather an invitation to see, and travel into, deeper experience, deeper love, and deeper mystery?…
On this day we gather to remember the suffering of Christ, and those who. like Christ, have suffered: often needlessly, seemingly pointlessly. We will reflect upon seven circles of suffering: in our own person, in our family, in our close relationships, in our wider community, in our nation, in our world and in our earth. We light the Christ candle and seven candles
to bring to mind those seven areas where pain is often experienced. As we reflect more deeply on each one its candle will be extinguished but the Christ candle will continue.
sermons and reflections from Penny Jones & Josephine Inkpin, a married Anglican clergy couple serving with the Uniting Church in Sydney