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Holy war: a contradiction in terms

Scripture: Ephesians 6: 10-18.  Nigel Bunce   St. Paul used military metaphors  In some of his letters, Paul imagined Christian apostles (those, like himself, called to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ) as being vigorous. Like soldiers, or like athletes, or like competent workers. Typical of his day, Paul had a rather masculine approach to […]


Living like Jesus – a Life of Love

Scripture: John 14: 15-29     Jan Savory   Saying Goodbye Todays reading comes from the discussion between Jesus and his disciples at the Last Supper in John’s Gospel. As Nigel told us on Maundy Thursday, John has a very different account of that time than the other 3 gospels. This discussion, the Farewell Discourse (chapters 13-17), […]


Midweek Evening Prayer, Easter 4, 2022

Pelagius claimed that human ability to choose to do evil or to do good is evidence fo God’s goodness.  Without that freedom, we would be merely robots.     Who was Pelagius? We just read part of Pelagius’ letter to a friend called Demetrius. Pelagius was a Welsh monk.  He travelled to Rome, where he […]


Mothering roles and shepherding roles

Scripture, John 10: 22-30 Nigel Bunce Mothering roles: providing care and hospitality.  God takes a mothering role as well as a shepherding role in the 23rd Psalm.  In patriarchal times, the Bible has a surprising number of stories of women in leading roles.  And in churches, it’s usually women who act as shepherds and mothers […]


Evening Prayer, week of Easter 3

Scripture: John 21: 4-13 Nigel Bunce Bread-and-fish eucharists originated from today’s Scripture story, along with the Feeding of the Five Thousand.  But why depart from the ‘traditional’ bread-and wine Eucharist?  One answer is that, in principle, any ordinary food or drink couldbe made holy. But, more controversially, perhaps, for some early Christian communities the idea […]


Eucharistic experiences with large and small ‘e’s

Scripture, John 21: 1-13 Nigel Bunce Eucharistic experiences do not always involve the words spoken at the Last Supper. Bread-and-fish celebrations were used by some early Christian communities.  These small ‘e’ eucharists are memorials of Jesus.  In them, there is no suggestion that the eucharistic elements are transformed from their ordinary states.    Today/s readings […]


Jesus, the true vine, meaning

Scripture: John 15: 1-6; 10-12 Jesus calls himself the “true vine” in this passage.  But did the Gospel writer John put words into Jesus’ mouth.  Because, we can read it as an example of John’s antagonism to the Jewish leadership of his day.   Significance of the vine, true or otherwise These two short pieces […]


Blindness, remembering, and journeys to faith

Scripture, Luke 24: 13-35 Nigel Bunce The Road to Emmaus is a story that combines spiritual blindness, remembering, and journeys to faith.  Two disciples met the Risen Christ as they journeyed home to Emmaus.  They came to faith as they remembered their stories about Jesus.  Their eyes were opened on their journeys to faith.   […]


Mr. Trudeau: step up for Ukraine, now!

Canada’s response to the pleas from Ukraine has been inadequate and too slow Wake up and step up, Prime Minister Trudeau! Over 1 million people of Ukrainian descent live in Canada, the largest Ukrainian diaspora outside Europe. These Canadians are looking to you for leadership as they watch Russian invaders destroy their ancestral homelands and […]


Doubting Thomas: our doubts about the story

Scripture: John 20: 19-31 Nigel Bunce The Gospel writer John explained that he wrote his Gospel in order for us to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. So how much liberty did he take in presenting the story of Thomas’s coming to faith. Image: Caravaggio, “The incredulity of Thomas” Context of the story This Scripture […]