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Extra-Ordinary Struggle

First Sunday of Lent Mark 1,12-13 St. Mark tells us that immediately following his baptism, Jesus was “driven by the Spirit into the wilderness for forty days tempted by Satan”. [Mark 1,12-13] This most important event receives only a brief mention, possibly because the first hearers were well aware of the struggle for they too …

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Extra-Ordinary People

Sunday Before Lent Mark 1,40-45 In January, our reflections examined God’s ‘Warfare Strategy’ against the Dark Powers of Evil, and we found the Epiphany was like ‘unwrapping’ God’s Christmas Gift of His Incarnate Son to the world. That Strategy needed at first to be kept Secret–to be revealed only bit-by-bit, and only to those who, …

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A Man in a Hurry

Christ Preaching in Galilee Mark 1,29-39 Familiarity with these verses, and those immediately preceding, can mask the sheer impact of Jesus’ visit to Capernaum at the start of his ministry. Here is power at work – not power as the world understands it, for worldly power often becomes an exercise in control – but the …

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A Reflection for Candlemas

Luke 2,22-38 Forty days before this feast that we commonly call in England by the name Candlemas, the child Jesus, the divine Word – who was and is God – who was born a man in a humble basement of a dwelling in the village of Bethlehem on the south side of Jerusalem. Entering the …

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The Calling of the First Disciples

Mark 1,14-20 St. Mark’s gospel is the most urgent and this is apparent from the beginning when Jesus called his disciples to follow him and become “fishers of men”. They were already followers of the Baptist and so the Lord immediately challenged them to proclaim the Gospel of God, the Good News. This begs the …

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The “Open Secret”

John 1,35-42 An ‘Open Secret’ sounds like a contradiction. But we saw, last month, how Secrecy is essential to God’s Plan for saving His World – because it needs unfolding to us bit by bit, to make it viable. For Act One of God’s Incarnation Strategy, He chose Mary to play the Lead Part by …

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Recognition of the Beloved

Mark 1,7-11 After 6th January the Church year is now called “Ordinary Time” which is a pity, because we have lost, what was formerly the Epiphany Season, providing the worshipper with a number of weeks to contemplate step by step the revealing of Jesus to the world. This is a crucial preparation for the next …

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A Meditation for Epiphany

Matthew 2,1-12 The story of the Epiphany is much more than a legend or a religious fairy-tale. We are often told that Luke is a careful historian, but this reading makes it clear that Matthew is as well. He locates this incident in a specific time and place: in Bethlehem, in the reign of Herod …

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Let Earth and Heaven Combine

Luke 22,1ff The Christmas day reflection on this site spoke of the strange mixture of earth and heaven that overshadows Christ’s birth. That mixture continues through the whole of lifetime of Jesus. Think about the image of the child of Bethlehem in swaddling clothes looking like an “Egyptian mummified body”, which of course is true …

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And is it true?

Mark 1,1-8 “And is it true?” That is what the poet John Betjeman asks in a poem simply entitled “Christmas”, and that, as you might say, is the sixty-four thousand dollar question. Obviously most people don’t think it is true, otherwise, rather than simply eat, drink and spend too much, in what sometimes seems like …

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