An Open Table where Love knows no borders

One Comment

  1. Vincent Michael Hodge

    Audrey’s sermon spoke several times about the message of the Gospel being simple but profound. Certainly her exposition of the reading achieved a real clarity as she spoke both simply and profoundly. A lot of us glaze over with too much scholarship but Audrey’s simple linking of the Greek term – Logos – to our English translation – Word – as used in our Gospel of john Bibles- immediately conveyed the profound point of the text – God’s consciousness, logic and rationality are all present in the flesh (John’s terminology for being human) of Jesus. Audrey’s impact was immediate and the text came alive.
    I am not into comparing preachers but Audrey’s sermon sits so welcomingly alongside a sermon by my local Catholic Archbishop of Brisbane and a sermon by the Administrator of my local Brisbane St Stephen’s Cathedral. One delivered on new year’s day and the other delivered on Sunday as Catholics celebrate the Feats of the Epiphany on January 2 this year. i mention these sermons only because I found that in listening to Audrey she was capturing, as if by summary of key points, what these two senior catholic clergy had presented over the New Year liturgy period.
    For Roman Catholics January 1 is traditionally celebrated as the feast of the Mother of God ‘theotokos” = God Bearer. In its original greek terminology from Council of Ephesus 431AD the title is both a focus on ‘being born of a mother” but more importantly what is born is “of God”…it is “God”. Theotokos = God bearer or One who has given birth to God. The Council was more concerned with defining Jesus’ birth as one of a God and/or a Human? Making innovative statements about Mary was not the core agenda. Obviously popular catholic piety has tended to focus on Mary but the official church focus is Jesus and the meaning of the Christmas Event. The Archbishop’s sermon parallels very much what Audrey was saying – both he and she talked about the significance of God taking on being human. The archbishop said much what Audrey said- in becoming human all of creation participates in the life of God = “pregnant with the life of god” was one phrase used by the Archbishop.
    Similarly when Father Mellor ( Cathedral Administrator) came to deliver his sermon on the Epiphany and the Magi, he also spoke to the significance of the Star as signalling a cosmic event juxtaposed with the shock that the Magi must have experienced when they arrived to find their Star had brought them to a baby in a very ordinary set of circumstances. The Magi did not hesitate and gave the child homage despite this profoundly unexceptional social status – all three sermons therefore captured the exceptional in the unexceptional!!
    As Audrey wound up her address she captured all three sermons in her concluding question: what is our stance to be living in a world loved by God? A God who has become ” real and concrete” – a God willing to become poor to learn about us and be in communion with us at our essential level – and in turn for us to learn about what God is like in divinity. Thank you Audrey.

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