Summaries of Weekly Sermons
See below for a selection of weekly sermons delivered by Anne, Nathan and by our guest clergy.
Please feel free to download the full sermon by using the links after each summary.
6th after Trinity – Matthew and Isaiah – Sunday 16th July
In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
Sometimes it is nice to go back to where you started. Sometimes we need to – to re-focus on where we are going, or to be reminded of what really matters to us.
The gospel of Matthew today tells us something of a story that would have been very familiar to them. It is equally likely to be familiar to us, and what is more, it would seem to be just as relevant now as then. In theological college, the parable of the sower is wheeled out time and time again in church growth and mission classes – redeeming the dubious expression ‘sowing seeds’ with a more virtuous emphasis. Because of its familiarity, it is easy (for me at least) to become bored or cynical when you hear it again, and again, and again.
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 16th July Sermon
St Peter’s Patronal Festival – Sunday 29th June
As is often the case in the gospels, Jesus’ questions are more important than the answers.
The gospel of Matthew, more than any other, is associated with building the Kingdom of Heaven. And appropriately, on the day which we celebrate the patronal festival of this church, it is Peter’s answer that interests us from the many given by the disciples.
Who do you say the son of Man is?
It is a somewhat leading question. But the answers are interesting. The answers are individualistic. They are (mostly) well thought through. They come from the people Jesus has gathered around him with different skills to hear different things. Accordingly, we hear a plethora of answers.
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 29th June Sermon.
CORPUS CHRISTI – SUNG EUCHARIST – Sunday 18th June
Corpus Christi – the Body of Christ. Tonight we celebrate and give thanks for our belief in Jesus
Christ, that he is the Son of God who came from heaven, and was made man to live among us and to give his life for us on the cross, in order that we might be saved from our wickedness and and so be able to live for ever with the Triune God. It is not a celebration of the institution of the
Eucharist, which we mark on Holy Thursday when Jesus met with his disciples for the last time to
have supper with them before his death and resurrection. On that occasion our thoughts are directed towards the events of the next couple of days, to our Lord’s trial before Pontius Pilate, his suffering and death upon the cross, and his time spent among those who had already died; which is why at the end of the evening Eucharist we depart in silence, the cross is covered and the altar is stripped. But tonight we rejoice in the fact that we have been fed with the true bread of God which came from heaven and gave life to the world.
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 18th June Sermon
MANCHESTER – Sunday 28th May 2017
I was born the year before the “troubles” started in Northern Ireland, and I grew up in a very divided province where violence, bombings, murder, suspicion and hatred were very much in evidence. Though with my parents being English there was a sense of being in it but not of it.
The most dangerous thing that happened was that Communities were segregated. Loyalists painted the kerbstones of their streets red, white and blue. Republican areas flew Irish flags and painted the gable ends of houses with pictures glorifying terrorists.
And sadly, in a sloppy, sectarian way, each side largely became identified in religious terms – the Republicans were “Catholic” and the Loyalists were “Protestant”, and the media, even the so-called respectable papers, colluded with those descriptions. In many people’s eyes it was a religious war.
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 28th May Sermon.
SUFFERING – 21st May 2017
The story is told of a sailor who owned a pleasure boat, and would take day trippers on a cruise around the inlets and bays of the coastline where he lived. He was always very careful to heed weather warnings and not put his passengers at risk.
But one day as he was a fair way out to sea, a sudden squall blew up and all around the boat the waves got very choppy, and the boat seemed like a cork bobbing up and down.
Not surprisingly the passengers became alarmed as they clung to the sides for dear life. As time went on the wind seemed to get stronger rather than abate and one of the terrified day trippers, fearing the worst, made his way to the wheelhouse and on behalf of the passengers asked the captain to pray with them.
And this is what the captain replied, “I say my prayers when the weather is fine, and when it’s rough I tend my boat.”
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 21st May Sermon.
“I AM THE WAY” – Sunday 14th May 2017
When I hear today’s Gospel read for an ordinary Sunday morning service rather than a funeral service – where the passage is most often heard – I think back to a service in our last parish when we had a visiting speaker from one of the missionary societies to preach.
She got up into the pulpit and started to speak. But very soon into her address her voice got weaker and her words got slower and then she collapsed disappearing from view in the pulpit.
The churchwardens rushed to help her and lift her out down the stairs of the pulpit, which wasn’t easy for she was a rather ample lady. There was nothing I could do except announce the next hymn which happened to be “The Lord’s my shepherd” – another favourite funeral hymn – and it was to the strains of that hymn that she came to, not knowing whether she was on earth or in heaven!
To read the full sermon please download Sunday 14th May Sermon.