The Cayman Islands are within the ancient Episcopal Jurisdiction

 of The Bishop of London granted him by the Crown in 1634

St Albans (Grand Cayman) & St Marys (Cayman Brac)

Church & Office - 461 Shedden Road

P O Box 719, Grand Cayman KY1-1103, CAYMAN ISLANDS

Tel  (345) 949 2757 : Fax  (345) 949 0619

www.churchofenglandcayman.com

rector@churchofenglandcayman.com

24 December 2017

Welcome to  St Alban’s Anglican Church 

Today's Scripture:  2 Samuel 7: 1-11, 16     Romans 16: 25-end      S. Luke 1: 26-38

Today:  9.00 a.m. Matins; 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; 7.30 pm SERVICE OF LESSONS AND CAROLS at South South Community Centre.

This Week: Monday 25th Dec. - CHRISTMAS DAY - 9.00 a.m. Matins; 9.30 a.m. CHRISTMAS EUCHARIST; Tues 26th (S. Stephen) HC 12.30 pm; Wed 27th (S.John) HC 12.30 pm; Thurs (Holy Innocents) HC 12.30 pm.

Next Sunday: 9.00 a.m. Matins; 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 pm Evening Prayer

Advance Notice: New Year's Day Monday 1st January 2018 - CIRCUMCISION OF CHRIST - 12.30 p.m. HOLY COMMUNION; Tues - Fri 2 - 5 Jan Midday Prayers.


4th Sunday in Advent

O LORD, raise up (we pray thee) thy power, and come anong us, and with great might succour us; that whereas, through our sins and wickedness, we are sore let and hindered in running the race that is set before us, thy bountiful grace and mercy may speedily help and deliver us; through the satisfaction of thy Son our Lord, to whom with thee and the Holy Ghost be honour and glory, world without end.

 

FAITH IN FOCUS: THE MODEL

Someone once said that the ideal model of Mary, her statue or painting, would show her looking just like one of us, and with her hands outstretched. In one hand she would be cradling the infant Jesus and in the other she would be holding a church.

Some people make too many claims for Mary and they end up idolising and demeaning her. Others are so reticent to see anything in her that they fail to see the great compliment that God is paying their human nature.

But the statue or painting with outstretched hands shows us why Mary is important. Everything the Church claims for Mary relates to what she holds in those hands.

Mary, as today’s gospel attests, is the bearer of Christ. In fact, one of her oldest titles proclaims her to be the Mother of God. She is honoured because, through her readiness to allow the Holy Spirit to work in her, the Christ was born into our world and the plan of God came to its fulfilment. Her “fiat” or “yes” to God meant that she dedicated her life to preparing the way for the Lord. That’s why she is hailed as the most honoured of all God’s creatures. She was not some sort of super being. She was just like us, with all the fear and doubt and perplexity. But she was open to whatever God wanted of her.

And in the other hand she holds a church. We are the Church: the community of those who are baptised into Christ’s death and resurrection and who seek to respond in faith. Mary, in a certain sense, could be said to be the first member of the Church and is often referred to as Mother of the Church. Like her we have to be ready and on the lookout for whatever it is that God asks of us at the various stages of our lives. We may find it troublesome, we may fear the consequences of saying yes to God, but we are invited to take Mary as the model of how we as the Church should trustingly respond to God’s call.


WORD OF GOD

I am the handmaid of the Lord;

let what you have said

be done to me. (Luke 1:38)


WORD FOR TODAY

God may not send an angel like Gabriel to appear to each of us. But he does want to hear our “yes”, our “let it be done to me” just as he waited for Mary’s response. As Advent draws to a close we too are invited to ask what it is that God is asking of us at this time, and to respond in faith.


GOD OFTEN VISITS US but most of the time we are not at home. (French proverb)

THIS WEEKS BIBLE READINGS

Mon (CHRISTMAS DAY): Isaiah 62: 6-end, Titus 3: 4–7, S. Luke 2: 1- 20

Tues (S. STEPHEN, Deacon, 1st Martyr): 2 Chronicles 24: 20-22, Acts 7: 51-end, S. Matthew 10: 17-22

Wed (S JOHN, Apostle & Evangelist): Exodus 33: 7-11a, 1 John 1, S. John 21: 19b–end

Thurs (HOLY INNOCENTS): Jeremiah 31: 15-17, 1 Corinthians 1: 26-29, S. Matthew 2: 13-18

Fri: Jonah 1, Colossians 1: 1-14, John 1: 1-18

Sat: Jonah 2, Coloss 1: 15–23, John 1: 19-28

NEXT SUNDAY: Isaiah 61:10 - 62:3, Galatians 4: 4-7, S. Luke 2: 15-21