Online Worship Archive

Welcome to the online service of worship for The Fourth Sunday After Trinity 2020.

Today's order of service can be download here in PDF format.

The YouTube playlist is here.  

Or view below.

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MAYFIELD SALISBURY PARISH CHURCH

EDINBURGH

Online Worship Material Available 8.00am Every Sunday

Sunday 5 July 2020

 

Fourth Sunday after Trinity

 

LOVE (III)

Love bade me welcome. Yet my soul drew back
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning,
If I lacked any thing.

A guest, I answered, worthy to be here:
Love said, You shall be he.
I the unkind, ungrateful? Ah my dear,
I cannot look on thee.
Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,
Who made the eyes but I?

Truth Lord, but I have marred them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.
And know you not, says Love, who bore the blame?
My dear, then I will serve.
You must sit down, says Love, and taste my meat:
So I did sit and eat.
                                                                               George Herbert

                                   .

www.mayfieldsalisbury.org

 

 AS A DIVERSE PEOPLE, THE CHURCH GATHERS TO WORSHIP ALMIGHTY GOD

 

Welcome - Revd Helen Alexander

Good morning Good morning to the members and friends of the congregation of Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church, and welcome to this worship online for the 4th Sunday after Trinity.

This month we are re-ordering our Service a little to take account of the holiday period which may bring some changes – for children at least – even in the strange days in which we’re living now. Each week we shall hear a Psalm for the day from that great Prayer Book of the Judeo Christian tradition that has been a great source of comfort as well as challenge for millions of people throughout the ages and still is today.

I invite you now to join me in a short period of silence in preparation for worship.

Scripture Sentences

Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin. And yet I say unto you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you….? Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you.

Let us pray

Let us not be afraid to ask, to seek; to knock at the door of the Divine for grace, goodness, and every help in time of trouble.

Let us come to the Father, inarticulate though we may be, like children searching for words to say what is in our heart, yet trusting that it is not necessarily our words that are most required in prayer, but trust and some knowledge that we are recognised, welcomed, received, forgiven.

Let us seek not so much what we may think is right for us, but openness of heart to receive help and hope that may come to us in ways that may be ordinary and familiar, or greatly to our surprise.

And acknowledging our rightful concerns about our health and welfare; the state of our minds and our complexity of soul, let us make all our prayers in the knowledge that we are not islands of identity but find our true being in relationship with one another and with God.

So still our minds, almighty God;

Guide our hearts;

Re-clothe us with the grace of hopefulness and calm,

And lead us in the way everlasting; though Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Collect

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ has taught us that what we do for the least of your children we do also for him, grant us the will to serve others in the name of him who was the servant of all; who gave up his life and died for us, and lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

 

Reading Psalm 145: 8 - 18  NRSVA

The Lord is gracious and merciful,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
The Lord is good to all,
    and his compassion is over all that he has made.

 10 All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord,
    and all your faithful shall bless you.
11 They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom,
    and tell of your power,
12 to make known to all people your[a] mighty deeds,
    and the glorious splendour of your[b] kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
    and your dominion endures throughout all generations.
 

    The Lord is faithful in all his words,
    and gracious in all his deeds.[c]
14 The Lord upholds all who are falling,
    and raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look to you,
    and you give them their food in due season.
16 You open your hand,
    satisfying the desire of every living thing.
17 The Lord is just in all his ways,
    and kind in all his doings.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
    to all who call on him in truth.

 SCRIPTURE QUOTATIONS are from New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

HYMN O Lord, thou art my God and King - Played by Kate Pearson -  Soloist is Louise Thomson

O Lord, thou art my God and King;
thee will I magnify and praise:
I will thee bless, and gladly sing
unto thy holy name always.

Each day I rise I will thee bless,
and praise thy name time without end.
Much to be praised, and great God is;
his greatness none can comprehend.

Race shall thy works praise unto race,
the mighty acts show done by thee.
I will speak of the glorious grace,
and honour of thy majesty;

Thy wondrous works I will record.
By many shall the might be told
of all thy awesome acts, O Lord:
and I thy greatness will unfold.

Psalm 145 (ii), verses 1-6
The Scottish Psalter,1929 (alt.)

 

WE LISTEN FOR THE SPIRIT OF GOD

 

Reading   Genesis 24: 34 - 38, 42 - 49, 58 - 67

 34 So he said, ‘I am Abraham’s servant. 35 The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become wealthy; he has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female slaves, camels and donkeys. 36 And Sarah my master’s wife bore a son to my master when she was old; and he has given him all that he has. 37 My master made me swear, saying, “You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live; 38 but you shall go to my father’s house, to my kindred, and get a wife for my son.”

 42 ‘I came today to the spring, and said, “O Lord, the God of my master Abraham, if now you will only make successful the way I am going! 43 I am standing here by the spring of water; let the young woman who comes out to draw, to whom I shall say, ‘Please give me a little water from your jar to drink,’ 44 and who will say to me, ‘Drink, and I will draw for your camels also’—let her be the woman whom the Lord has appointed for my master’s son.”

45 ‘Before I had finished speaking in my heart, there was Rebekah coming out with her water-jar on her shoulder; and she went down to the spring, and drew. I said to her, “Please let me drink.” 46 She quickly let down her jar from her shoulder, and said, “Drink, and I will also water your camels.” So I drank, and she also watered the camels. 47 Then I asked her, “Whose daughter are you?” She said, “The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.” So I put the ring on her nose, and the bracelets on her arms. 48 Then I bowed my head and worshipped the Lord, and blessed the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me by the right way to obtain the daughter of my master’s kinsman for his son. 49 Now then, if you will deal loyally and truly with my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, so that I may turn either to the right hand or to the left.’

 

58 And they called Rebekah, and said to her, ‘Will you go with this man?’ She said, ‘I will.’ 59 So they sent away their sister Rebekah and her nurse along with Abraham’s servant and his men. 60 And they blessed Rebekah and said to her,

‘May you, our sister, become
    thousands of myriads;
may your offspring gain possession
    of the gates of their foes.’

61 Then Rebekah and her maids rose up, mounted the camels, and followed the man; thus the servant took Rebekah, and went his way.

62 Now Isaac had come from Beer-lahai-roi, and was settled in the Negeb. 63 Isaac went out in the evening to walk in the field; and looking up, he saw camels coming. 64 And Rebekah looked up, and when she saw Isaac, she slipped quickly from the camel, 65 and said to the servant, ‘Who is the man over there, walking in the field to meet us?’ The servant said, ‘It is my master.’ So she took her veil and covered herself. 66 And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. 67 Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent. He took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.

 

Reading Romans 7: 15 – 25a  

 15 I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. 17 But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.

21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, 23 but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So then, with my mind I am a slave to the law of God, but with my flesh I am a slave to the law of sin.

 

Reading St Matthew 11: 25 - 30

Jesus Thanks His Father

25 At that time Jesus said, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; 26 yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. 27 All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

28 ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’

Readers: Christine De Luca and Kay McIntosh DCS

SCRIPTURE QUOTATIONS are from New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

 

Reflection Revd Helen Alexander

The other day I happened on a little joke.

Young woman in a car:

It’s not my fault, Officer. I’m a Gemini and Geminis are always in a hurry.’

Policeman with his notebook:

Bad luck, Madam. I’m a Libra. Here’s your ticket!’

For those of you who never sneak a look at your horoscope, the scales of justice are the astrological symbol for Libra.

This doesn’t seem a bad place to start in considering today’s passage from St Paul’s Letter to the Romans that contains the well-known verse, ‘the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do’ to quote the King James Authorised Version of the Bible on which many of us older ones were raised.

Of course, Paul wasn’t thinking of the Zodiac, but the Jewish Law on which he had been raised along with many of those to whom he was writing. For Paul, the rigorous demands of the Law, even if followed to the letter, could never change anyone sufficiently to lead to human freedom. For him, this freedom lay solely in the activity of the Spirit in Jesus Christ, the exploration of which occupies some of his most beautiful writing in the next chapter of his letter.

But back to Chapter 7 and as the New Revised Standard Version puts it: ‘I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do.’

The same NRSV introduces this section as ‘The Inner Conflict’ which is a good way of putting it. For Paul, this conflict is caused by sin, thought of in a personified sort of way, as if a demonic kind of being inhabits a person and severely messes up his or her behaviour. Possibly he had the Genesis’ account of ‘The Fall’ in mind in which sin in the form of a snake inveigled its way into Eve’s consciousness and induced her to pluck the fruit and to share it with Adam.

Paul was a man of his time, and few these days find this personified way of thinking about evil or sin helpful – though some still do, and sometimes adopt strong, even violent measures in an attempt to drive it out.

More helpful to many of us is to see the situation as one that afflicts most if not all of us, quite simply because we’re human. As individuals we don’t always act as if from a single mind. In this conflicted state it can be as if one internal voice says one thing and another something different. This can lead to a kind of paralysis whereby we swither and dither and don’t do anything; or end up doing that which is against our better judgement, sometimes even asking ourselves as we go: ‘Why on earth am I doing this…..whatever possessed me to say that!’

Assuming this isn’t the most comfortable or helpful way to live, the question is what might be done about it? The Apostle Paul was in no doubt: ‘Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!’

Then he embarks on to his lyrical writing on the influence and grace of the Holy Spirit. For Paul, the activity of God in Christ through the Spirit is a shorthand way of expressing the way forward.

We may not disagree, but probably want to think things through a bit.

One of the most striking elements of Paul’s story is his dramatic conversion that is recorded more than once in the Book of Acts. You’ll remember that he was bent on routing out and imprisoning members of the church in Damascus, and on the way had a startling experience in which he heard Christ calling to him: ‘Saul, Saul why do you persecute me? And in the memorable language of the AV again: ‘It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks!’ As a result, the fervent persecutor became as fervent an apostle. I don’t think it’s too much to suppose that before his dramatic experience on the Damascus road, Paul was a conflicted, divided self, partly strongly attracted to the very faith he was committed to stamping out. It won’t be the first or the last time that someone moves heaven and earth to deny the very thing they deeply hold to be true.

Throughout the ages, people have indeed undergone dramatic experiences of conversion to faith, finding peace, solace and often great and single-minded commitment as a result.

But this is not the same for us all. Dealing with our inner conflicts can be a life’s work, even when the church has long played a large part in that life. The Christian faith is not of the ‘one-size fits all’ variety.

Some of us may require ongoing help from enlightened psychiatry, psychotherapy or counselling, the insights of which can be immeasurably helpful in the ongoing struggle for ‘integration’, to use a modern word to describe the work of facing and understanding internal conflict. The flourishing ‘therapy movement’ can be criticised as an unhealthy encouragement to self-absorption. On the contrary however, when provided by professionally competent, insightful practitioners who truly seek the welfare of the people in their care this work can produce great benefit for those who are prepared to risk the hard and often painful work required for growth and change.

None of this renders a life of church-going and the practice of prayer and devotion redundant, of course. Quite the reverse: to see one’s life, with its struggles as well as its joys in the light of the overarching reality of that which we call God is the life-blood of faith, calling us all to reach towards a unity of meaning and purpose for which most human beings long. This is the endeavour for which the church of Jesus Christ stands.

And so we come to more well- known Biblical words that we’ve already heard today, this time from St Matthew’s Jesus: ‘Come to me all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls.’

The divine Physician of the Soul has many healing hands on earth.

 

RESPONSE TO THE SPIRIT OF GOD WITHIN

 

Sonata for two cellos: Allegro non troppo
Jean-Pierre Guignon (1702-1774)
Kate Pearson, organ, James Pearson, cello

 

 

Thanksgiving and Intercession Revd Helen Alexander

We think of people in this congregation, and those of other churches who may be scattered throughout this country and beyond, calling to mind those we know who may be sad and lonely, frightened, ill, anguished in spirit. We seek grace for them and timely help through the comfort of friends and family, wise counsel and skilled care, and renewed faith. And in silence now, we name those who are in our minds and hearts……….

We think of people everywhere: those of any age who are facing an uncertain future; children whose lives may be affected by current circumstances in ways we may be only dimly beginning to comprehend; people who are out of work or worrying that they may become so; those who are nearing the end of their lives and needing particular consideration and protection in these days.

We think of grave concerns in our own country and abroad: the stress and strain of working out next steps in the recovery of welfare and economy; the burgeoning effects of the coronavirus in Asia, the Americas and other lands; the immensity of the pressures on the people of Hong Kong; the revolutionary political change anticipated in Russia; and the ongoing battle with the poverty and disease, famine and displacement that relentlessly stalks the earth.

We pray for all who suffer and those who do all they can to help; for governments and policymakers; for all those dedicated to life and health, as well as all whose lives are consumed by self-aggrandisement and hate and who find excitement in terror and destruction.

And still we offer gratitude for all evidence of good; for faith enough for the present and hope for the future; for signs of life within and around us; for quiet good humour and the blessed tonic of laughter and release; for sympathy and understanding; for grace; for the promise of the enduring love of God.

And into that love we commit all whom we remember and the millions upon millions we can never know, giving thanks for the great Communion of Saints, past, present and to come; in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory. For ever and ever. Amen.

 

HYMN  Guide me, O thou great Jehovah - Played by Kate Pearson -  Soloist is Louise Thomson

Guide me, O thou great Jehovah,
pilgrim through this barren land;
I am weak, but thou art mighty;
hold me with thy powerful hand:
Bread of heaven, Bread of heaven,
feed me till my want is o'er.
feed me till my want is o'er.

Open now the crystal fountain
whence the healing stream doth flow;
let the fire and cloudy pillar
lead me all my journey through:
strong Deliverer, strong Deliverer,
be thou still my strength and shield.
be thou still my strength and shield.

When I tread the verge of Jordan,
bid my anxious fears subside!
Death of death, and hell's destruction,
land me safe on Canaan's side!
Songs of praises, songs of praises,
I will ever give to thee.
I will ever give to thee.

William Williams (1717-1791)
translated Peter Williams (1727-1796)

 

 BENEDICTION

Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the Son of peace to you
And the blessing of God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you all.

 

HYMN 825 Amen

Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.

 

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INTIMATIONS

MEMORIES OF MAYFIELD by Sheriff Nigel Thomson C.B.E. (1926-2011) Nigel Thomson's fascinating booklet of recollections and photographs of earlier times at (the then) Mayfield Church can be downloaded and read in its entirety here: Memories of Mayfield.

YOUTH UPDATE

Netflix Watch Party: Sunday 5 July at 7pm we will be watching a film together with 'Netflix Party.' We will meet on Zoom first. Parents will be emailed with more details on Sunday. All ages are welcome with parents' permission. Get in touch with Hillary if you have any questions.

Virtual Youth Programming: The *virtual* youth schedule for the month of July can be accessed on the church website under the 'Young People' tab. All youth programming will be held over Zoom. New virtual youth consent forms must be sent to Hillary before attending a session. For log-in access to the Zoom sessions, or to get a copy of the consent forms, please contact Hillary!

 

NEXT SUNDAY’S READINGS: Psalm 65, Genesis 25: 19 – 34, Romans 8: 1 – 11 and St Matthew 13: 1 – 9

 

REMEMBERING SREBRENICA Certain philosophical approaches assume uninterrupted growth and progress for humanity - whether in terms of economics or morality. And it is possible to look at the world and see evidence of things being better than once they were. Thirty years ago, one-third of the world’s population lived in extreme poverty - living on less than $1.90 a day. Most recent figures indicate that that figure is now nearer to 10% of the world’s population.

We can’t yet claim to have made poverty history, but progress has undoubtedly been made. Let us rejoice in that whilst committing ourselves to work for further progress. But in terms of how we humans get on with one another, it’s hard to argue that we’ve made much progress at all. Do we forget so quickly? Are we so inept when it comes to remembering to remember - and to learn?

Twenty-five years ago the world watched in horror at what unfolded across the Balkans generally and, particularly, at Srebrenica. Those who thought that such unthinkable extermination only happened elsewhere, or belonged in the history books, were shocked to see such scenes taking place in ‘civilised’ Europe.

It was never more important than it is now that we remember what happened - in a historical sense and because it is so very easy to allow ourselves to slip into the same dark places. Even now, there are divisive voices in our communities, doing their best to emphasise difference and to exploit what’s going on in the world for their own ends. These voices must not prevail - which will require all people of goodwill to do more than be idle bystanders.

In remembering Srebrenica, with deep shame and sadness, let us apply ourselves to working for reconciliations, understanding and peace in our world today. www.srebrenica.scot

Yours in Christ,

Rt Revd Dr W Martin Fair

Moderator, General Assembly of the Church of Scotland

 

A Prayer for Srebrenica

God of yesterday, today and tomorrow,
Hear us as we pray and remember the people of Srebrenica,
We pray for those, whose memories are scarred with pain,
For those whose hearts are broken
For lives that were torn apart.

Hold us, and all those we remember in your embrace,
Never letting us forget the sins of humanity.

Bring us close to all;
Mothers and children,
Fathers and sons,
Sisters and brothers of those left behind
And heal their pain and sorrow.

Teach us never to forget the lessons of the past,
And in going forward, create a world of equity;
Not to be divided by hatred and discrimination
But united in courage, love and empathy

Help us Lord to learn to live for a world
Where differences are valued and respected
Where fear and distrust will never consume us.
We ask that those suffering would know your peace
and their lives might be restored through your grace. AMEN.

 

ONLINE OFFERING / DONATION The Church is very grateful to all those who give by standing order enabling us to maintain a large portion of our income through these difficult times. We now offer the ability to contribute to our work electronically through the ‘give.net’ facility which appears on the home page of the Church’s website. This provides the possibility of adding Gift Aid to donations. There is also a direct link to the new system which is: https://www.give.net/20311853        Hugh Somerville, Free Will Offerings Treasurer.

PASTORAL CARE Many thanks to all of you who have been in the various phone trees over the past few months. They have been so important and reassuring for so many people.  For those of you making the masks, scrubs and bags. The nursing home have asked me to thank you all for your generosity of time and talents. They now have enough, but are so grateful for your help and response when they were so desperately needing it. Kay

 

Forthcoming Deadlines

Order of service for next week: Thursday at 6.00pm.

Next GrapevineFriday 31 July at 6.00pm.

Please send submissions to the Church Manager, William Mearns.

Phone: 0780 801 1234 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Books for the Journey

My Sour-Sweet Days: George Herbert and the Journey of the Soul by Mark Oakley.

Luminaries: Twenty lives that illuminate the Christian Way by Rowan Williams.

 

Copyright Notices

SCRIPTURE QUOTATIONS are from New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church holds a CCLI Streaming License: #88916.

 

  

Social Media

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www.youtube.com/user/MayfieldSalisbChurch

www.flickr.com/photos/98063709@N06/

Youth Instagram: the.msyg

 www.mayfieldsalisbury.org

Scottish Charity Number SC000785

Online Offering

Contact Information

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church,
18 West Mayfield,
Edinburgh,
EH9 1TQ

0131 667 1522 / 0780 801 1234

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
Scottish Charity Number: SC000785

Quotations

  • Because God is both knowable and unknowable the tension of the symbol, the multilayers of the myth and the openness of the poetic are all vital to our desire to celebrate the Mystery to whom we relate and in whom we have our being.
    Mark Oakley

  • You must love him as he is: neither God, nor spirit, nor image; even more, the One without commingling, pure, luminous ...

    Meister Eckhart

  • The purpose of our life is God's glory. However lowly a life is, that is what makes it great.
    Oscar Romero

  • Faith may justify bigotry or fanaticism, as Church history tragically witnesses. It needs a safeguard. If it is not animated as it were by the greatest of the theological virtues (love), faith can become defective.
    Thomas Norris

  • Dry not, dry not, your tears of love eternal! Only to eyes that fail to weep does this world seem so dull and dead. Dry not, dry not, those long, sad tears of love.
    Johann von Goette

  • The post modern paradigm manifests itself as a unity which preserves diversity and diversity which strives after unity.
    David Bosch

  • There is only one assertion that requires no evidence. Children are a sacred trust...Unless we care properly for our children, we shall never build a better world.
    'A Good Childhood’ The Children’s Society

  • These are only hints and guesses, hints followed by guesses; and the rest is prayer.
    'The Dry Salvages' T.S.Eliot

  • According to strict truth, God is incomprehensible, and incapable of being measured.
    Origen

  • Myth is a story about the way things never were, but always are.
    Thomas Mann

  • In the darkness ...The child of your love - and now become as the most hated one - the one You have thrown away as unwanted - unloved ..... The darkness is so dark .... I have no faith.
    Mother Teresa

  • I love the Bible. I owe my faith and my life to the Bible and its liberating message. It is in the Bible that I first met Jesus ... I too am included in God's embrace.
    Gene Robinson

  • It is this great absence that is like a presence, that compels me to address it without hope of a reply ....
    R.S. Thomas

  • Faith is not a proud self-consistent philosophy. It involves maintaining oneself between contradictions that can't be solved by analysis. It is therefore a living response to the grace of God as revealed in fragile lives.
    Mark Oakley

  • Any religion which does not say that God is hidden is not true.
    Blaise Pascal

  • The contemporary Church is losing aspects of its wide and generous memory and therefore condemning itself to become a 'swimming pool Church' - one that has all the noise coming from the shallow end.
    Mark Oakley

  • For all your doctrinal headaches take Paradox.
    Mark Oakley

  • The true vision and the true knowledge of what we seek consists precisely in not seeing, in an awareness that our goal transcends all knowledge and is everywhere cut off from us by the darkness of incomprehensibility.
    St Gregory of Nyssa

  • Death, death be hanged, the Lord has promised me that I shall live. This I believe!
    Martin Luther

  • We feel that even when all possible scientific questions have been answered, the problems of life have not been put to rest.
    Wittgenstein

  • Religion is the flight of the alone to the Alone.
    Plotinus

  • Stupid clergymen appeal quite directly to a Bible passage directly understood ....
    Soren Kirkegaard

  • What is the point of the arts of reading and criticism as long as the ecclesiastical interpretation of the Bible, Protestant as well as Catholic, is cultivated as ever?
    Friedrich Nietzsche

  • A figure like Ecclesiast, rugged and luminous, chants in the dark a text that is the answer, although obscure.
    Wallace Stevens

  • Myth is the poetry of the soul.
    Sara Maitland

  • Our loss of the ability to think mythically, poetically, allegorically, creatively, theologically, and artfully is a greater threat to our religious experience than anything good scientists have to report ...
    Sara Maitland

  • In general, Zen attitude is that words and truth are incompatible, or at least that no words can capture truth.
    Douglas Hofstadter

  • 'God' is a one word poem
    Rowan Williams

  • What is today? Today is eternity.
    Meister Eckhart

  • Apprehend God in all things, for God is in all things.
    Meister Eckhart

  • The most powerful hunger we have, mostly suppressed and misdirected, is the hunger for God.
    Miroslav Volf

  • We frequently judge that things are as we wish them to be, for through personal feeling true perspective is easily lost.
    Thomas a Kempis

  • Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.
    Rabindranath Tagore

  • God is the beyond in our midst.
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  • 'God is not the answer, God is the question.'
    Herbert McCabe