Trinity: the dance of love

Recently, I wrote about believing the unbelievable. What do we do when the thing which we know to be true with every fibre of our being is also something which is almost impossible to explain and certainly impossible to prove empirically to others around us? The Christian concept of the Trinity definitely fits into this […]

What is Church?

If I asked you the question “what is Church?”, the image likely to come to mind is of an ancient stone building, probably from the middle ages, with stained glass windows, a tall tower, and possibly some bells. It’s a very English answer, and of course the answer will change depending where one is. But […]

Telling the Truth?

“But I am telling the truth! Honestly!” All of the hardest things in life I think is to be telling the truth and not be believed because the truth is so in-credible. We live in a world where we often take lies, half truths, and obfuscations as an accepted part of public life in particular. […]

Journeys of Faith

Journeys are all kinds of things: exciting, challenging, adventurous, daunting. They can be long, they can be short, they can be mundane, or they can be life changing.  This Sunday, we will be welcoming two children into the family of faith as children of God in St Mary’s church in Buckland. We will also be […]

Christ the Cornerstone

“Christ is made the sure foundation; Christ the head and cornerstone.” So the hymn by Henry Purcell goes. Psalm 118.22: the stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.  Perhaps unsurprisingly for a carpenter, Jesus had a good understanding of building, and used such metaphors in his teachings. Far from being hard to understand, […]

Jesus said, “Peace be with you”

It is now three years since a small group across the Vale of White Horse Deanery has been coming together on Zoom on Wednesday mornings to pray for the Church in our area and topical issues.  Each week we pray for our clergy and ministry teams, and we focus in particular on one benefice and […]

God of Surprises

Many years ago, there was a book called God of Surprises. The title has stayed with me over the years, because it’s just so very true. Our God is one of surprises, doing the most unexpected and unpredictable things, which often seem (by human standards) to be somewhere between eccentric and daft.  But these things […]

The Great Commandment

What is heavier: a ton of coal or a ton of cotton wool? I remember when I was a child, being asked that question, or a variant on the theme, where one item was clearly “heavier” than the other. Except it wasn’t. I’d missed the point. I’d confused volume with weight. Of course if you […]

Praying for No Hatred or Bitterness

Today, Thursday 12th October, the Church of England remembers two extraordinary Christian women, Elizabeth Fry and Edith Cavell.  Both committed their life’s work to serving God by caring for those damaged and broken by the inhumanity of human beings. Elizabeth Fry is best known for her campaigning for prison reform.  She inspected prisons, developed post-release reintegration programmes […]

Do as I say, not as I do!

Oscar Wilde famously said, the only thing to do with good advice is give it away. Last week at a clergy gathering, someone mentioned the book “A Year Lost And Found” by Michael Mayne, one time Dean of Westminster Abbey. It chronicles a year of debilitating illness, which was eventually diagnosed as myalgic encephalomyelitis. His […]