Online Worship Archive

Welcome to the online service of worship for The Tenth Sunday After Trinity 2020  😊

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Sunday 16 August 2020


tenth Sunday after Trinity 


‘I think that maybe’

I think that maybe
I will be a little surer
of being a little nearer.
That’s all. Eternity
is in the understanding
that that little is more than enough.

R S Thomas
Poet and Priest




Welcome Revd Neil Gardner

Good morning, and welcome. This is Neil Gardner leading worship today, I’m the Interim Moderator at Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church and I’m glad not just to be sharing in this act of worship but to be giving my friend and colleague Helen Alexander a much deserved break. Let’s begin as is the usual custom at Mayfield Salisbury, with a moment of quiet to prepare ourselves, our hearts, our minds, our spirits for this time of worship together.

Today’s call to worship comes from the Gospel according to St John: It was not to judge the world that God sent his Son into the world, but that through him the world might be saved. Thus reassured, let us pray:

Loving God, look upon us as we gather together yet apart, and wherever we are grant us a sense of your presence, your purpose, your peace. Grant us too we pray a sense of your forgiveness, for those times when we fall short of the standard you have set us in the life and teaching and the death and rising of your Son Jesus Christ, the times when by the things we think and say and do, or neglect to think and say and do, we let you down, and each other and even ourselves. Lift us up by your loving kindness, we pray, and have mercy upon us; lift us up and lead us on to follow more closely in the footsteps of Jesus, and in the assurance that it was not to judge the world that God sent his Son into the world, but that through him the world might be saved.

Almighty God,
you have broken the tyranny of sin
and sent into our hearts the Spirit of your Son.
Give us grace to dedicate our freedom to your service,
that all people may know the glorious liberty of the children of God;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


Children’s Message Hillary Leslie

Good morning friends! I’m happy to be here with you – together, even though we are apart. For those who went back to school this past week, I hope your first few days went well, and that you enjoyed seeing your friends and teachers!

During this time of year, I’m always reminded of my childhood summers when my Grandma would take me back-to-school shopping. It was her special treat that she did for all of the grandchildren, and I looked forward to it every year. It was so much fun getting to pick out some new school supplies, preparing for all of the different subjects I’d be taking that year.

When you go to school, what sort of things do you need to bring with you? I wonder what new supplies you need for this year?

I have my backpack here, and it is full of the sorts of things most of us need for school, and some of the adults might even need for work! I have my notebook, a pencil case with pens and highlighters, books for class, a calculator, a water bottle, a snack, money for my lunch, an umbrella in case it rains, a jumper for chilly autumn days. I wonder if I’m missing anything? Oh! I know one thing that’s different this year is making sure I have my face mask with me, just in case I do need to go on the bus or go to the shop.

Hmm all of these things are really important for being prepared for school – but I still feel like I’m missing something. . .Ah, here it is! I need to make sure I have some flowers with me. Well, maybe I don’t really need to have them with me at school, but it’s important to remember the flowers each day.

There’s a Bible verse in the book of Matthew where Jesus says ‘Notice how the lilies in the field grow. They don’t wear themselves out with work.’ In this passage, Jesus is speaking about the worries and fears of his followers; they are worried about what they will eat, drink and wear. . .if they will have enough money for these things they need.

Like Jesus’ followers, we too have worries and fears. We might be a little scared or anxious about going back to school this year because of the pandemic. Or we might be a little bit worried about our new classes, or new classmates and making friends.

Jesus is reminding us in this passage to remember the lilies, or the flowers, that grow in the fields. The flowers don’t worry, but they trust that God will provide the rain and sun that they need to grow big and beautiful.

If we remember the flowers, and how God cares for them, Jesus tells us that God also knows what we need. God cares for us just as much, if not more, than he cares for the flowers. Jesus reminds us that as long as we trust in God, and believe that God is with us even on the really hard days and during times when we feel anxious or worried, God will provide us with what we need: peace, hope, joy, love. . .or friends and classmates who’ll cheer us up when we feel down, or lend us a pencil when we forgot ours at home. God gives us friends, teachers and parents who will help us when we ask.

As you walk to school with your backpack full of supplies, if you find yourself worrying about the day, take a moment to stop and smell some flowers – let them remind you just how much God loves you, and remember that God is around you and within you, and never apart from you.

Let’s close our eyes and pray, repeating after me:

Dear God, You are around us, and within us,
And never apart from us.
Thank you for the flowers -
A reminder not to worry, because you love us.
Thank you for friends and teachers,
Who help us and care for us.
Be with those who need a friend today. Amen.


HYMN The Lord’s my Shepherd, I’ll not want

The Lord’s my Shepherd, I’ll not want.
He makes me lie in pastures green.
He leads me by the still, still waters,
His goodness restores my soul.

And I will trust in You alone.
and I will trust in You alone,
for Your endless mercy follows me,
Your goodness will lead me home.

He guides my ways in righteousness,
and he anoints my head with oil,
And my cup, it overflows with joy,
I feast on his pure delights.

And though I walk the darkest path,
I will not fear the evil one,
for you are with me, and your rod and staff
are the comfort I need to know.

Words: Psalm 23, adapted Stuart Townend
Music: Stuart Townend (c) 1996 Thankyou Music CCLI
Played by Kate Pearson sung by Louise Thomson




Reading   Psalm 133   Christine De Luca    NRSVA

The Blessedness of Unity

A Song of Ascents

How very good and pleasant it is
    when kindred live together in unity!
It is like the precious oil on the head,
    running down upon the beard,
on the beard of Aaron,
    running down over the collar of his robes.
It is like the dew of Hermon,
    which falls on the mountains of Zion.
For there the Lord ordained his blessing,
    life for evermore.


Reading   St Matthew 15: 21 - 28     Kay McIntosh DCS    NRSVA

The Canaanite Woman’s Faith

21 Jesus left that place and went away to the district of Tyre and Sidon. 22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came out and started shouting, ‘Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is tormented by a demon.’ 23 But he did not answer her at all. And his disciples came and urged him, saying, ‘Send her away, for she keeps shouting after us.’ 24 He answered, ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.’ 25 But she came and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, help me.’ 26 He answered, ‘It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.’ 27 She said, ‘Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.’ 28 Then Jesus answered her, ‘Woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.’ And her daughter was healed instantly.


Reflection Revd Neil Gardner 

Psalm 133 How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity!

When you go home, tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow we gave our today. The familiar words of the Kohima Epitaph, carved into the stone of a poignant memorial in an immaculate Commonwealth War Graves cemetery in Northern India, remind us that yesterday marked the 75th anniversary of VJ Day, when the Second World War in the far east came at last to an end on 15th August 1945. It was an especially grim phase of the war that had continued relentlessly since VE Day in May, but so far away that those who fought in it felt overlooked, the forgotten army they called themselves, out of sight and out of mind. They included Captain now Sir Tom Moore, whose recent fundraising efforts for National Health Service charities captured the imagination of the nation, and reflected the sort of dogged determination that has long been the hallmark of many a Burma veteran, a characteristic once forged by necessity in that distant but deadly cauldron of fighting in the most testing of conditions. Under the current conditions many of the commemorative events planned to mark the anniversary this weekend have not been able to go ahead as originally planned. In Canongate Kirk, the military church for Edinburgh, we should have been hosting a major service yesterday, elements of which were transferred online courtesy of the Royal British Legion Scotland. At the time of recording this reflection our city was still due to witness a flypast by the Red Arrows, always a stirring and impressive sight, and a clear signal to the forgotten army that they are forgotten no more, that we will remember them, both those who in the words of Kohima, came home and those who gave their today for our tomorrow.

Of those who came home and are still alive, there cannot now be many who share Sir Tom’s strength and vigour even if they share his indomitable spirit. Or indeed that of the woman in this morning’s extract from the Gospel according to St Matthew, whose own dogged determination sees her pursue Jesus and his disciples as soon as they cross the border into Tyre and Sidon. Her daughter is tormented by a demon and it is as if the mother has absorbed her pain, shouting and shrieking as she implores Jesus, Have mercy on me Lord, son of David. In turn the disciples urge him to send her away, they have had enough of her and just want five minutes peace, which is probably what they’ve come to Tyre and Sidon for in the first place, but which we know too they would now find once again at Mayfield Salisbury on a Wednesday evening! Jesus is initially reluctant to engage with the Canaanite woman, who is local and by definition not a Jew. ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel’, he eventually informs her, but she is undaunted and utterly persistent. She came and knelt before him, St Matthew tells us, saying Lord, help me. But Jesus is still hesitant. ‘It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs,’ he suggests, meaning that his priority is neither her nor her people. But with both wit and wisdom, the Canaanite woman retorts, Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table. And that at last is good enough for him to oblige. Then Jesus answered her, Woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish. And her daughter was healed instantly. And so was the division between his people and her people, differences are overlooked in the face of need and suffering and what matters most, more than anything else, is meeting the need and easing the suffering. Once again Jesus reaches out across barriers and divisions, beyond expectations and experiences, and brings his healing touch. And once again proves the Psalmist’s assertion, How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity!

An almost exact contemporary of Captain Sir Tom Moore was Eric Lomax, born just a year before him in Portobello in 1919 but captured by the Japanese in 1942 and held a prisoner of war until VJ Day in 1945. Forced into hard labour on the notorious Burma-Siam railway the young officer’s account of his experiences before and after the war were turned into the film The Railway Man. In a powerful scene towards the end of the film he is asked about his eventual reconciliation with his wartime torturer. Sometime the hating has to stop, he says wistfully. Sometime the hating has to stop. How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity. The Psalmist knew that sometime the hating has to stop. So did those for whom the war finally came to an end on 15th August 1945. The 75th anniversary challenges us not just to remember the forgotten army, but all those who still suffer today in so many different ways as a result of hatred, and feel themselves forgotten and overlooked. And just as the Cananaite woman brought her daughter’s suffering to Jesus, it encourages us to bring their suffering to the One who still reaches out across all barriers and divisions, beyond all expectations and experiences and brings his healing touch that they might eventually know How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity. Now may God bless to us this preaching of his most holy word, and to God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be all praise and glory now and forever. Amen.




Voluntary Edward C Thomson (1897-1977)         Played by Kate Pearson     


Thanksgiving and Intercession     Revd Neil Gardner 

God of wisdom and love, giver of all good things, we thank you for your loving-kindness and your constant care over all creation. We bless you for the gift of life itself, for your guiding hand upon us, and your sustaining love within us. We thank you for friendship and duty, for good hopes and precious memories, for new ways of working and worshipping, for the joys that cheer us and the trials that teach us to trust in you.

We bless you for Jesus Christ, your Son, our Saviour, for the living presence of your Spirit, for your Church, the body of Christ in the world today and we pray for the work and witness of the church around the world and for all who are called to serve the Church as leaders, that through all its branches and denominations the church everywhere may continue to hold out the way of faith and hope and love amidst all the challenges and difficulties of these days. We pray for the Church of Scotland in all its variety from city-centre to country kirk, and we pray for Mayfield Salisbury, for its ministry team and office-bearers and not least for the members of the Nominating Committee as they take their work forward at this time.

We pray for The Queen and for all the Royal Family and Household. We pray for all those set under the Queen’s authority in Parliament, both in London and in Edinburgh, that all those who walk in the corridors of power may fulfil their service for the welfare of the people and the glory of your name. We pray for the leaders of all nations, for all those on whose discussions and decisions the lives and livelihoods of so many depend. And we pray especially for those dealing with the impact of the coronavirus in this country and around the world, for those who have lost loved ones to it, for those suffering from it, and for all those whose responsibility it is to ensure treatment and protection.

Today we remember before you those caught up in the train derailment in Aberdeenshire, those who were killed or injured, those who attended as emergency services, those who serve as accident investigators. And we pray for those who continue to suffer the aftermath of the explosion in Beirut, with all its causes and consequences.

We pray for people who continue to suffer from war and conflict, from hatred and prejudice and as we pray for a time when the hating will stop, we pray for peace not just in troubled nations but on troubled streets and in troubled homes and hearts. We pray for all who suffer in any way, those who are ill at home or in hospital, those who are lonely or anxious or afraid, those who are weary or worn or sad and for all who care for them and about them. We pray that each in their own way might know something of your presence.

Finally O God, we give thanks for those who have died in the faith, especially those known to us and dear to us who have entered into the joy of your nearer presence. Grant that we may follow their example in this life and so come to share with them the glory of everlasting life, through Jesus Christ our Lord, in whose words we pray together the family prayer of the Church,

Our Father, who 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. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.


HYMN 425 The Saviour died, but rose again

PARAPHRASE 48, verses 5-9

The Saviour died, but rose again
triumphant from the grave;
and pleads our cause at God's right hand,
omnipotent to save.

Who then can e'er divide us more
from Jesus and his love,
or break the sacred chain that binds
the earth to heaven above?

Let troubles rise, and terrors frown,
and days of darkness fall;
through him all dangers we'll defy,
and more than conquer all.

Nor death nor life, nor earth nor hell,
nor time's destroying sway,
can e'er efface us from his heart,
or make his love decay.

Each future period that will bless,
as it has blessed the past:
he loved us from the first of time,
he loves us to the last.

Scottish Paraphrases,1781
Romans 8: 34-end
Played by Kate Pearson sung by Julie Morrice


BENEDICTION Revd Neil Gardner

And now in the familiar words of the Gaelic Blessing: may the road rise to meet you, may the wind be always at your back; may the sun shine warm upon your face and the rain fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand. And the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit descend upon you and remain with you this day, in all the days to come, and even for evermore. Amen.

AMEN Full Choir






Introducing Mayfield Salisbury Sermons by phone.

Simply call the dedicated phone number 0131 546 4337 and listen on Sundays from 8.00am onwards. Alternatively, the recording may be heard at any other time over the week. Note: there may be a slight pause on connection!

Important intimations regarding reopening of the church buildings, the ministerial vacancy and others will be included when appropriate.

Important! Read this before calling - Call costs!

This is a local call so local geographic call charges will apply and will, in most cases, form part of any inclusive minutes or call packages you have i.e. standard local call rates may apply. Please make sure you understand your costs before using this service.

Please pass this message on in full to those who do not have access to the internet.


FIVE MINUTES’ PEACE RE-OPENING  We are delighted to announce that Five Minutes’ Peace, opening the Sanctuary of Mayfield Salisbury Church to members of the congregation and the wider public for private prayer and meditation, will recommence this week. It will take place every Wednesday from 6.30pm to 8.00pm. Strict social distancing protocols will be in operation and visitors must wear a face covering. Come and experience once again the beauty and peace to be found within our Sanctuary.



Virtual Youth Programming: The *virtual* youth schedule for the month of August can be accessed on the church website under the 'Young People' tab. All youth programming will be held over Zoom. 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!

Youth Game Night: We'll be having an informal game night and summer catch-up over Zoom on Sunday 23 August. 630-730pm for P6-S1 and 730-830pm for S2-S6. Get in touch with Hillary for the log-in!

Youth & Parent Surveys now available - Hillary has created surveys for the parents and youth looking over the 2019-20 youth programming term, including the virtual programming since March. These are very helpful to continually improve youth programming at MSPC, and to aid with the planning process for the upcoming term, so if you haven't gotten a copy and would like to take part, please get in touch with Hillary!


ANNUAL LEAVE Hillary Leslie will be on annual leave 16 to 22 August inclusive.


NEXT SUNDAY’S READINGS Romans 12:1-8 and St Matthew 16: 13-20.


PASTORAL CARE The Revd Neil Gardner may be contacted with pastoral care enquiries on 0131 556 3515.



This week we received another urgent appeal from Christian Aid, which we hope you will consider supporting. While we appreciate that we have only just publicised the Coronavirus appeal, the situation in Lebanon is so devastating that we felt you would also like to be made aware of this. Christian Aid tells us:

On 4 August a sudden explosion tore through the port of Beirut, Lebanon as the shock wave raced through densely populated areas. More than 750,000 people have been affected by this terrible disaster which has left families out on the streets with no food, shelter, or emergency medical care. Nearly 150 lives have been lost and more than 5,000 people have been injured. Across the city, neighbourhoods were reduced to rubble by the blast. Hospitals and crucial stores which contain around 85% of the country’s grain as well as medical supplies have been destroyed. Homes and businesses have been flattened to the ground, windows shattered and doors knocked down. Approximately 300,000 people are now homeless.  We are responding now, delivering essential items to those directly impacted by the explosion, including prepared hot meals, water, hygiene and disinfection materials, clothes, mattresses, and cleaning supplies.

Your donation will ensure we can keep providing these vital packages. We’re hugely grateful for all the support you have given to the many emergency appeals we have sadly had to send out this year. Your generosity is truly inspiring and we understand if you can’t help again. But if you are able to, please help our brothers and sisters in Beirut today by donating to our Lebanon Crisis Appeal. Thank you for your generosity. If you’d like to contribute to the Lebanon appeal, please click on the link below:


Donate now ►


Donations to the Coroanvirus appeal can still be made via the Christian Aid website at Cash and cheques cannot currently be accepted, but you can make a donation by telephone on 020 7523 2269. Thank you again for all your support.


VACANCY UPDATE Over the past few months the Nominating Committee has met several times courtesy of Zoom which on the whole has worked very well for us. As you may be aware the Commission of the General Assembly recently issued guidance to assist congregations and Nominating Committees during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Nominating Committee will have to rely on different methods for assessing candidates to those normally used but we are confident that we will be able to make progress. When we reach the point of a sole nominee preaching we will do our best to ensure that all those entitled to vote will be able to see and hear the nominee conduct the same act of worship and be able to participate in the vote. Depending on the Covid-19 restrictions applying at the time, this part of the process may take longer than usual and we will issue advice and guidance on the process when we reach that stage.

Meantime we ask you to keep us in your prayers.

Boyd McAdam. Convener


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 ‘’ 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:

With best wishes, Hugh Somerville, Free Will Offerings Treasurer


Forthcoming Deadlines

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

Next GrapevineFriday 28 August 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

Youth Instagram: the.msyg

Scottish Charity Number SC000785

Online Offering

Contact Information

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church,
18 West Mayfield,

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


  • 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.

  • 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.

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

  • 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
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  • 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