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Showing posts from October, 2020

How do I love God and love my neighbour? Matthew 22.34-40

Matthew 22.34-40 If we loved God with all our heart, soul and mind, and if we loved our neighbour as ourselves .. .. we would so delight in God that God would be everything to us: more important than anything that we had here on this earth: our reputation, our comfort, our possessions, our passions, even than the person who we love most dearly here. [We think, ‘But how could I possibly love God more than I love my child or my beloved?’ CS Lewis writes, “When I have learnt to love God better than my earthly dearest, I shall love my earthly dearest better than I do now. Insofar as I learn to love my earthly dearest at the expense of God and instead of God, I shall be moving towards the state in which I shall not love my earthly dearest at all. When first things are put first, second things are not suppressed but increased.”]   If we loved God with all our heart, soul and mind, our greatest desire would be to be in his presence. And separation from God would plunge us into the deepest des

St Sergius of Radonezh

St Sergius of Radonezh St Sergius is a figure of major significance. He is described as 'the Teacher and Mentor of the Russian land". His life was recorded by one of his followers, Ephiphanius the Wise (in about 1417-18), subsequently adapted by Pachomius the Serb (in 1470), of which there are at least three versions. He is mentioned 12 times in early Russian chronicles and is recorded in 7 different official documents. He was born 1314 in Rostov to noble and devout parents and given the name Bartholomew. He was a slow pupil at school, but was, according to the tradition, miraculously enabled to read after an encounter with a starets. As a young man he cared for his parents and then, when they died, moved about 3 hours walking distance from Radonezh (where the family had fled after Rostov had been attacked) into the forest, where he - with Stefan, one of his brothers - built a cell in which to live and a church which he dedicated to the Trinity (the present Trinity Cathedral i

Forgetting God. Conspiracy theories and the true cornerstone. Matthew 21.33-46

Matthew 21.33-46  Matthew 21 is a story that could inspire a block buster.   A man builds a house on the edge of Moscow. He invests his time and his money to build the most amazing building. He brings in skilled workmen and uses the highest quality materials. It looks good and it is good. It is worth millions.  But he is going away to the US, so he rents it, at a knock down price, to someone he thought was a good friend. All he says to the friend is, ‘Look after the place, and pay me money to cover the bills.’ After a year or two, having heard nothing, he sends an agent to find out what the place is like and to receive the rent. But the so-called good friend doesn’t let the agent in. The man sends other, different agents. But this time the so-called good friend has them beaten up. So the man thinks, I’ll send my son. I’m sure there is a misunderstanding, and my friend will obviously respect my son. But the tenant thinks: The owner lives in the US. I’m registered to this address. If