What is more important? To be better than others? Or to be the best that we can be? For too many people, to be judged to be inferior to others can be so damaging to their self-esteem; so damaging in fact that they fail to be the best they can be because their ‘best’ has already been judged to be less than good enough.
ne size fit’s all’ is not an appropriate motto for the Christian Church. Moreover, such an approach can only serve to stifle innovative thinking, suppress energetic enthusiasm, and limit the church’s ability to respond imaginatively.
So, how was it for you? The New Year I mean. The absence of fireworks on Central Square meant it was something of a damp squib as far as Hampstead Garden Suburb was concerned. It also ‘proved’ that the otherwise large congregation that usually attended ‘Watchnight’ had, to say the least, mixed motives.
With Christmas already behind us, 2021 is drawing to its close. To describe it as a strange year would be an understatement. Indeed, the last two years have been unlike anything that most of us have experienced during our lifetimes.
We read to know we’re not alone’, words spoken by Anthony Hopkins in his role as C.S. Lewis in Shadowlands. Getting on for these last two years, reading has been the salvation of many. Summed up for me most succinctly thus, ‘Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.’ As the likelihood of yet another period of lockdown seems increasingly inevitable, these words resonate. – I know we might substitute Television or Radio for Reading; both equally valuable in their own way – Nevertheless, there is something about ‘Reading’. The author, Hannah Fielding, comments, ‘
And so, 9 Lessons & Carols is nearly upon us. The lessons themselves are already determined. But as for the carols, now that’s another matter altogether. We all have our favourites. We all have at least one carol that we just cannot stand. Well, convention has it that we start with, ‘One in Royal David’s City’, and at the Free Church we invariably end with, ‘Hark the Herald Angels sing.’ But in between?
If resources, however they might be calculated are finite, ‘levelling’ requires some to be ‘brought up’, but this can only be achieved by others being ‘brought down’.
As we move through the Advent season, we are reminded how it is that in the Old Testament we have recorded the words of the prophets foretelling the coming of the Messiah. And of course, the Christian tradition believes that such prophecies have found their fulfilment in the birth of Jesus the Christ. But there is also a less well-known prophecy which declares that before Messiah shall come, Elijah shall return.
Dear Friends, This coming weekend sees the beginning of the season of Advent which in four weeks’ time will culminate in the celebration of Christmas itself. Traditionally it is a time for waiting and watching, for watching and waiting. These
…Of course, it begs the question as to just who is deserving of ‘Celebrity’ status? …A unique persona made widely known to the public via media coverage, and whose life is publicly consumed as dramatic entertainment, and whose commercial brand is made profitable for those who exploit their popularity, and perhaps also for themselves…