The 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 : Fax (345) 949 0619
Welcome to St Alban’s Anglican Church
Today's Scripture: Genesis 14: 17-20 Revelation 19: 6-10 S. John 2: 1-11
EPIPHANY III - 9.00 a.m. Matins; 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; Dr. Anthony Garrett at Refreshments; 6 p.m. Evening Prayer with Dr. Garrett speaking.
This Week: Tues-Wed, Fri 12.30 pm Midday Prayers; Thurs, CONVERSION OF S. PAUL Holy Communion 5 pm.
Next Sunday - Septuagesima: 9.00 a.m. Matins; 9.30 a.m. HOLY EUCHARIST; Dr. Anthony Garrett at Refreshments; 6 p.m. Evening Prayer with Dr. Garrett speaking.
3rd after Epiphany
Almighty and everlasting God, mercifully look upon our informities, and in all our dangers and necessities stretch forth thy right hand to help and defend us; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
FAITH IN FOCUS: SPOILSPORT GOD?
When Jonah had finished preaching to the people of Nineveh they repented and God forgave them. But Jonah was furious and accused God of being lily-livered for not bringing a good old-fashioned disaster on them as a warning to other sinners.
I suspect that we can all sense a bit of Jonah in us. There are times when we think that certain people - and even at times ourselves - should be made an example of rather than shown clemency. Yet the very first words of Jesus in Mark’s gospel show that God wants people not to be damned but to turn back to him: ‘Repent and believe the Good News’.
Forgiveness is in many ways the greatest humiliation, for it requires of us that we actually admit we are sinners. Today we are very good at finding excuses for our sin. We talk about compulsive behaviour, diminished responsibility and mitigating circumstances. This might all be true, but it doesn’t take away the sin. We are capable of deliberately doing something wrong, and in the depth of our being we know that we regularly do sin.
And Jesus knew it too. Yet strangely he was not so much obsessed with sin as with forgiveness. He urged people to look at themselves squarely, warts and all, and to acknowledge their need to change. This is what real repentance means... change.
If we avoid minimising and evading our sinfulness then we have the opportunity to face the truth and to grow. For the truth sets us free to develop rather than live the life of sapping torment that ignores our behaviour or relativises it by saying ‘Well, everyone does it these days’.
Admitting our need for forgiveness breaks the spiritual paralysis. The grace of repentance empowers us to act decisively. We do not deserve the unconditional pardon that God offers, but in Christ we are entitled to it. For when we admit our need of repentance we enable our minds to think clearly once more, to refocus on the truth of the Good News, to lose the heartache that sin always brings with it. Sinful actions ultimately entrap and make life deadly. Repentance offers fresh hope and resurrection.
WORD OF GOD
This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory; and his disciples believed in him.(John 2:11)
WORD FOR TODAY
God’s mercy presents us with a paradox. God is no pushover, for he is just. Yet his desire for us to be saved is such that he constantly offers us the grace of repentance.
TO A MAN WHO FELT that his sin had put him beyond forgiveness a monk said, "When you tear your shirt you mend it and use it again. God is no different with you."
CONFESS YOURSELF to heaven;
repent what's past;
avoid what is to come.
THIS WEEK’S BIBLE READINGS
Mon: Genesis 11:27 - 12:9, Matt 26: 1–16, 1 Cor 9: 15-end
Tues: Gen 13: 2-end, Matthew 26: 17-35, 1 Cor 10: 1-13
Wed: Gen 14, Matt 26: 36-46, 1 Corinthians 10:14 - 11:1
Thurs (CONVERSION OF S. PAUL): Jeremiah 1: 4-10, Acts 9: 1-22, S. Matthew 19: 27-end
Fri: Genesis 16, Matthew 26: 57-end, 1 Corinthians 11: 17-end
Sat: Gen 17: 1-22, Matthew 27: 1–10, 1 Cor 12: 1-11
NEXT SUNDAY: Deuteronomy 18: 15-20, Revelation 12: 1-5a, S. Mark 1: 21-28