|Pen and Ink Reflections||
Good morning! It is a delight to be back here in Pitt Street after several weeks away on personal ‘sorry business’ and study leave. In the context of the continuing pandemic, it has certainly been what some might call an ‘interesting’ time, marking an important watershed in my own life and that of my wider birth family. In offering some reflections today, I would therefore like to begin by expressing my deep gratitude for the many, many. wonderful expressions of support from members of our Pitt Street community, and for the prayers which have been offered. I continue to be so grateful for the gift of loving relationships I am given as part of our life together, and I look forward to their further and deeper unfolding in the days to come. For relationship is such a core element of our lives, and never more important than at times of loss, grief, challenge and growth. As such, it is so absolutely foundational to the Day of Mourning we mark today, as well as to the trials of the pandemic world with which we continue to journey, and the struggles of our own particular lives. In the light of these things, my own recent and continuing journey, and of our readings today, I offer up relationship as one of three words which might be central to our considerations at this time.
Sometimes the message of Jesus is inflammatory – there are no two ways about it! Today Jesus expresses this very directly as he says, ‘I came to bring fire to the earth and how I wish it was already kindled!” Now this is not at all comfortable. Most of us prefer to avoid conflict and live life peaceably. We are much more at home with Jesus’s messages about love and peace and kindness, treating everyone with respect and seeking to welcome everyone. So, what are we to do with today’s story about how Jesus comes to bring division, even into the intimate unit of the family?...
There are two titles for this Sunday in the lectionary, namely Christ the King or the Reign of Christ. Which do you prefer? Think about it for a moment. Have a look too at today’s two New Testament readings (Colossians 1.11-20 and Luke 23.33-43). They also have different emphases. Which of these would you choose for preference? The answer of course is that both of these are valuable and balance one another. Yet, as with the title of this Sunday, there is a genuine tension between them and, in wrestling with this tension, we are led into a deeper understanding of God and our relationship with God and one another…
Have you heard the tale of the barefoot man, the migrant woman and the taxi driver? It is a true story that Pope Francis recently told to more than 25 000 people gathered in St Peter’s Square…
Epiphany 3C, Sunday 26 January 2014 - by The Revd Dr Jonathan Inkpin
Back in 1997, when I first came to Australia on a job exchange, I picked up a wonderful little item. It was an audio cassette: which, in itself, tells you it was quite a while ago! The tape contained the best entries from a poetry competition for schools. The title of the poem the children had to write was ‘A Typical Australian’. What would you have written? It is perhaps a good question for us on this Australia Day. It is not that there is exactly a right answer, as that competition proved. Yet our attempts to give an answer help us to tease out what is truly important to us: what is really important
about being Australian. And, in a way, that is very like what it is to reflect upon the Gospel and to grow as a Christian. For there is no exact answer to that either. Our attempts to give an answer however help us tease out what is truly important to us: what is really important about being a child of God: children of God with Australian features...