T he Cayman Islands are within the ancient Episcopal Jurisdiction
of The Bishop of London granted him by the Crown in 1634
St Alban’s (Grand Cayman) & St Mary’s (Cayman Brac)
Church & Office - 461 Shedden Road
P O Box 719, Grand Cayman KY1-1103, CAYMAN ISLANDS
Tel (345) 949 2757
Welcome to St Alban’s Anglican Church
Today's Scripture: Genesis 9: 8-17 1 Peter 3: 18-end S. Mark 1: 9-15
1st Sunday in Lent: 8.35 a.m. Matins; 9.00 a.m. Church School; 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 p.m. Evening Prayer.
This Week: Tues - Fri 12.30 pm Midday Prayers; Sat, S. Matthias 12.30 pm Holy Communion.
Next Sunday: 8.35 a.m. Matins; 9.00 a.m. Church School, 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 p.m. Evening Prayer.
1st Sunday in Lent
O LORD, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights: Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness and true holiness, to thy honour and glory, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end.
IN FOCUS: FIGHTING BACK
‘Spiritual warfare’ is not a very popular term because it tends to conjure up the image of Christians who are besieged by a hostile world and holed up in some sort of religious system which is a bastion against all progress and development. Sometimes it is the rallying call for off-balance people who want to ban all pleasure and find fault in the most innocent of things. The Church, of course, is not an organisation that is primarily against things. It’s in favour of life and goodness in all its forms. It’s something wholesome and positive.
Yet we cannot escape spiritual warfare. In Scripture we find Noah’s ark battling the floodwaters of all that is evil, and we meet Jesus in the wilderness fighting off the temptations of the devil.
There is no doubting that evil exists in our world. There’s no need here to give a long catalogue of terrible things that happen day by day. We can all cite the examples. And even more speedily we can recall the various ways in which we ourselves co-operate with evil. For evil is not just something that other people get involved in. We are tempted each day to become part of it. Far from being something terrible, like genocide or war, evil creeps up on us in the simplest and craftiest of disguises. It may be the gossip we chip in with that blackens someone’s character, the small act of dishonesty that weakens us for the next time, the festering coldness with which we treat members of our family or the prejudice we house for certain types of people. Evil starts as a small seed and is prepared to bide its time.
But it is never too late to fight back against sin and evil. God told Noah that although the world had turned from goodness and truth he would never allow evil to get the better of humanity. And Jesus himself, although he was really tempted at the roots, gave us the pattern to fight against temptation. God has made a covenant with us that ensures we can never be overcome against our will.
Lent is the period for taking stock of how we allow evil to take hold of us. And with God’s grace it’s the period for fighting back.
WORD OF GOD
I establish my Covenant with you:
no thing of flesh shall be swept away again
by the waters of the flood.
There shall be no flood to destroy the earth again.
WORD FOR TODAY
As Lent continues we are reminded that there is nothing in this world that can ever overcome God’s loving care for us. No hold, no addiction, no temptation can ever be greater than God’s grace. In the next few weeks we pledge ourselves to co-operate with God’s call to conversion and repentance.
THE DANGER WITH LENT is that we think of it as “repentance” multiplied by six. In fact it is a journey with recognisable signposts as the weeks go by. This year (Year B) it is characterised by the challenge to be considered fools for Christ’s sake. Our renewal involves pledging ourselves to values that seem sheer madness to the consumer mentality of much of our world. (Oliver Todd)
THIS WEEK’S BIBLE READINGS
Mon: Genesis 41: 25-45, Galatians 3:23 - 4:7, John 5: 1-18
Tues: Gen 41: 46 - 42:5, Galatians 4: 8-20, John 5: 19-29 Wed: Gen 42: 6-17, Galatians 4: 21 - 5:1, John 5: 30-end Thurs: Gen 42: 18-28, Galatians 5:2-15, John 6: 1-15
Fri: Genesis 42: 29-end, Galatians 5: 16-end, John 6: 16-27
Sat: Genesis 43: 1-15, Galatians 6, John 6: 27-40
NEXT SUNDAY: Genesis 17: 1-7, 15-16, Romans 4: 13-end, S. Mark 8: 31-end