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
Welcome to St Alban’s Anglican Church
Today's Scripture: Joshua 5: 9-12 2 Corinthians 5: 16-end S. Luke 15: 1-3, 11b-end
Today: 8.35 am Matins; 9am Church School; 9.30 am HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 pm E. Prayer
This Week: Tues - Fri 12.30 pm Midday Prayers.
Next Sunday (Passiontide begins): 8.35 am Matins; 9am Church School; 9.30 am HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 pm EP
4th Sunday in Lent (Mothering Sunday)
Grant, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that we, who for our evil deeds do worthily deserve to be punished, by the comfort of thy grace may mercifully be relieved; through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
FAITH IN FOCUS: ALWAYS SOMEONE WORSE
We’re fond of passing off our troubles with the phrase, “There’s always someone worse off than us”. Secretly, we’re rather glad there is, because we’d hate to think that we were at the bottom of the pile!
But by the same token we also end up thinking, “There’s always someone worse”. (Not worse off, just worse.) We know that we can be bad but we comfort ourselves with the thought that there are a lot of nasty people out there, and I’m certainly not as bad as they are. Newspapers and TV encourage us to think like this by dubbing people as monsters and beasts. And today Jesus is faced in the gospel with some righteous leaders who complain about the company he keeps and the sort of characters he eats with. It seems we always need someone to scapegoat because that makes us feel more worthy.
Yet the parable of the prodigal son is about all of us. No honest person can ignore the message of the story. Each one of us can recognise how capable we are of taking a perfectly lovely situation and reducing it to rubble. Spending the money on wine, women and song is merely a symbol of our tendency to mess things up in our own particular way.
Now the way God deals with sinners is the way the father dealt with his son. He welcomes them unconditionally and offers them food. That’s the hard part for some people. If the sinner were made to go through some public humiliation or dressing down, then they’d be happy. But in fact it’s an embrace and a dressing up that awaits the young man. And it’s the older brother who finds all this forgiveness too much to take. After all, he’s better than his prodigal relation.
The story of the prodigal son is an antidote to modern society. For it speaks of things that are given, not earned. It overflows with “concessions” that ring badly in the ears of many. It says that we should rehabilitate not punish, that we should be profoundly moved by someone who sees the error of their ways, and that we should welcome back rather than shut out. To a world thirsty for “justice” it offers only grace.
WORD OF GOD
This man, they said,
welcomes sinners and eats with them. (Luke 15:2)
WORD FOR TODAY
There is nothing that is so bad that God cannot forgive it if we are truly sorry. There is no sin that can put us out of reach of God’s mercy. Today we are reminded that the God we worship is the same God who is humble enough to welcome sinners and to eat with them. Repentance has a central place in the Christian life. But fear doesn’t.
RECONCILIATION sounds a large theological term, but it simply means coming to ourselves, arising, and going to our Father. (John Oman)
WHO AFTER HIS TRANSGRESSION doth repent,Is half, or altogether, innocent. (Robert Herrick)
CLEAN YOUR FINGERS before you point at my spots.
THIS WEEK’S BIBLE READINGS
Mon: Exodus 2: 11-22, Hebrews 9: 1-14, John 9: 18-end
Tues: Exodus 2:23 - 3:20, Hebrews 9: 15-end, John 10: 1-10
Wed: Exod 4: 1-23, Hebrews 10: 1-18, John 10: 11-21
Thur: Exod 4:27 - 6:1, Hebrews 10: 19-25, John 10: 22-end
Fri: Exodus 6: 2-13, Hebrews 10: 26-end, John 11: 1-16
Sat: Exodus 7: 8-end, Hebrews 11: 1-16, John 11: 17-27
NEXT SUNDAY: Isaiah 43: 16-21, Philippians 3: 4b-14, S. John 12: 1-8