A sermon for the Great Paschal Vigil preached by the Revd Andrew Woff
An adaptation of the First Kontakia on the Life of Christ, a sung or chanted sermon by the great sixth-century poet and singer, St Romanos the Melodist.
Jesus’s unique priesthood ensures that he is able to help us, and his solidarity with us in suffering ensures that he will help us.
God’s love for us is so great that God will do anything to give us a way out of the self-condemnation and self-destruction of continuing to live in conformity with the world’s ways.
Jesus is angered by our trivialising of religion that inoculates us against the claims of a holy God, and calls us to clean out the crassness and commercialism and approach God on God’s terms.
Hope is the melody of the future – Faith dances to it today
When we glimpse the fullness of what could be, we are called to the tough work of bridging the gap between here and there.
The unfailing love of God is with us, even in the tragedy, confusion, and anguished questions and doubts.
God is with us to comfort and revive us in the face of horror, but also to challenge us to turn things around.
Jesus meets us with not just words of hope, but with actions of authority and integrity.
We have become exiled from our destiny as God’s children, but Jesus has been born among us to reveal to us and restore us to that destiny.
Let us keep the festival by standing confidently, and affirming our faith in the God who takes flesh among us, today!
In God’s coming reign, things we find impossible to reconcile will be reconciled.
Christ is so present we loose the ability to see him. We need to worship to recover our sight.
The death of Christ strips us bare, but in his resurrection we are clothed in Christ and become participants in his resurrection life.
God will do great things with us, but will not impose them on us, so we have to relinquish control before God brings about the growth we crave.
Violence must be a constant temptation for God, but in absolute love, God has vowed never to resort to it.
In Jesus, God is calling us to see and hear a gospel that takes us beyond rule making and sacred violence.
God’s new culture of forgiveness is entered by faith, and sometimes it is even vicarious faith.
The gospel calls us on a road to healing and wholeness, but its steps are so deceptively simple (which doesn’t mean easy) that we often don’t take them seriously and so don’t do them.