Monday, 28 September 2009

4th October

Plans are now in place for next Sunday. We will be back in St Michael's. Having had the six summer months in St Nicolas', we will have the six winter months in St Michael's. As usual there will be a quiet half-hour Communion service at 9.30. This is for those who appreciate this instead of or in preparation for the First Sunday Thing. At 10.30 we will have a market place of different things for people to call at including egg painting, rap learning and discovering things about modern Franciscan Friars. At about 11.00 will bring all this together for an informal half hour service on a St Francis' Day theme.

Monday, 21 September 2009

St Francis' Day

We look forward to the next First Sunday Thing being on St Francis’ Day. But a warning: the two best known things about St Francis’ aren’t true. He wasn’t an eco-warrior. And he didn’t write ‘Make a channel of your peace’. There is a story of his preaching to the birds, and he wrote about the whole creation praising God, but then he would talk with absolutely anyone about putting the message of the Gospel into practice. And ‘Make me a channel of your peace’ is a nineteenth century song written in the spirit of St Francis. We’ll see what more we can share when we plan for 4th October tomorrow evening.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Love your neighbour

Those who visited the Bible Study corner at the last First Sunday Thing saw how a text for the day appears in three different places in the Bible. 'Love your neighbour as yourself' is tucked away in an obscure corner of Leviticus, somewhere between the insightful 'don't spread slander' and the suprising 'don't wear clothing woven from two kinds of material'. But Jewish people in Jesus' time had already picked it out as a key verse in the Old Testament. So Jesus quotes it as a key text in Matthew's Gospel, and our reading for the last First Sunday Thing from the letter of James near the end of the New Testament does so too: 'if you really keep this royal law, you will do right'.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Pulled away from God

One of the questions posed for Sunday was "What are the habits and the things which people around us regard as natural behaviour and attitudes which actually pull us to behave in ways which deny the Gospel by which we claim to live?". Not wanting to stand out was by most the common answer collected on the day, of which the following is a sample.

Thinking what other people might say.
Went off an watched TV instead.
Family demands.
What other people might say about us which may hurt our feelings.
One friend says I can't.
We don't listen.
Popularity (fitting in); easier not to challenge.
Feeling others have more or are more able.
Listening to what other people say.
Because of lack of confidence I hang back.
Peer pressure.
Not having enough myself.