Palm Sunday procession…

I wonder whether you have ever walked, or marched, or cart-wheeled, or sambad, in any kind of procession. My very earliest memory of all is of watching my father march with the band at a naval base – I was about two years old. I can remember the beating of the drum and the sound […]

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Overflowing love…

Last week I baked a simnel cake for us to share after church. Traditionally you put eleven little balls of marzipan on the top because they represent the apostles – without the traitor Judas. But I always put twelve on anyway – because I feel sorry for him. And because one of the sermons I […]

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A scandalous story…

Some of the hardest passages to preach on in the Bible are the most familiar ones. Whatever can remain to be said about the parable of the Prodigal Son that has not been said before and probably rather well? When you know it’s going to be the Prodigal Son, most of might be tempted to […]

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The theological problem

  Sometimes there are days when the Bible seems a million miles away from where we are and the concerns we actually live with – all those verses about not eating prawns or wearing shirts made of mixed fibres, all those dreams and visions of fantastic beasts with horns at the end time, and even […]

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The golden rule…

Jesus said, ‘Do to others as you would have them do to you.’ The early Church grew, not by holding great public mission events, not by holding worship that was accessible to newcomers or attractive to teenagers – but just because people could see that Christians lived lives that were really different from every around […]

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Citizens of heaven… on a world mission Sunday

‘our citizenship is in heaven….’  Philippians 3:2 World mission – two words that put together can mean lots of different things. We tend, these days I think, to feel more comfortable about world development than world mission. So somehow this can feel like a rather abstract subject – something to think about. Today I really […]

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The holiness of God

I have heard, and indeed preached,  quite a few sermons on this text from Isaiah. Most of them it has to be said at ordination or induction services. These are usually occasions marked by a frisson of nervousness, a strong sense of achievement and expectation,  and quite a lot of sandwiches and tea.  Sometimes, threaded […]

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God speaks even to the foolish….

One Christmas, when my daughter was quite small, I received a letter from her primary school that said on its first line, ‘Dear Mrs Durber, your daughter is an ass…’ and then the second line ‘in the school nativity play’. For a brief moment I had thought that this was an overly blunt assessment of […]

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John the Baptist or Jesus?

Reading the stories about John the Baptist I sometimes think I’m going completely the wrong way if I want to be a popular preacher. The Gospels tell us that ‘the whole of Judaea’ went out to the wilderness to hear him preach, but when you read what he preach you wonder why. According to Luke, […]

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Prepare the way!

I’m sure you all know this story, but I’ll tell it anyway! It’s told about a rabbi, but it could just as easily be a priest or a minister, or just about anyone. A rabbi prayed to God that he would win the lottery. The synagogue needed a new roof, the poor needed to be […]

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The end of the world as we know it

Sermon by Peter Henderson based on the gospel reading: Mark 13:1-13 Introduction I can vaguely remember, as a small child, getting quite upset about something that was not going my way, and my mother saying to me: 
“It’s not the end of the world, you know.” And it turns out that she was right! But, […]

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