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
2: 1-21 Romans 8: 14-17 John 14: 8-17, 25-27
FAITH IN FOCUS: OFF OUR OWN BAT?
The Pentecost story is a remarkable one. The apostles had virtually gone into hiding for the seven weeks that followed Jesus’ death on Calvary. Today we meet them huddled in a room together. We have heard elsewhere how terrified they were that they even kept the doors locked. They were afraid that the authorities would come looking for them and that they too would be executed. To say they were demoralised would be putting it mildly.
Suddenly the Holy Spirit comes upon them and they are changed men. Out they go into the open and begin to preach about the marvels of God in all sorts of languages, yet, in a reversal of what happened when confusion reigned at Babel, everyone could understand what was being said.
In a world that prizes self-reliance the gift of the Spirit comes as an antidote. It teaches us that we are far too frail by ourselves to tackle the ills of our time, to proclaim the Gospel of Christ, to establish God’s kingdom on earth. We can’t even pray off our own bat; we need the Spirit to speak through our mumbling to God. Yet with God’s spirit we are capable of sharing in the wonders that God wants for this world.
The Spirit does lots of things. It is the Spirit who consoles, supports, comforts, inspires, forgives, gives strength and wisdom, and leads us to know the truth. An ancient hymn speaks about the Spirit as “bending the stubborn heart and will, melting the frozen and warming the chill, washing the stains of guilt away”.
The greater the saint, the more reliant they are on God’s Spirit. For to recognise our need for the Spirit is not weakness but simple common sense. It is God who acts in our world and in our lives, using the Spirit to guide and direct us. The Spirit was given to us at our baptism and we can either allow him to lie dormant, preferring to rely on our own resources, or we can summon the power of God to shape and inform our thoughts, words and deeds.
The Spirit certainly changes things, as the apostles would tell you. He invites us on God’s adventure. But, first, we have to let him in through our locked door.
WORD OF GOD
Now there were devout men living in Jerusalem
from every nation under heaven...
each one bewildered to hear these men
speaking their own language. (Acts 2: 5)
WORD FOR TODAY
God’s Spirit is the bond of unity among all humanity. Sex, race, colour and language take second place to what we share in Jesus Christ. What makes us one is not our difference but our unanimity in proclaiming that Jesus is Lord to the glory of God the Father.
PEOPLE FASCINATED by the idea of progress never suspect that every step forward is also a step on the way to the end. (Milan Kundera)
THIS WEEK’S BIBLE READINGS
Mon in Whitsun: Josh 1, Acts 10: 34-end, S.John 3:16-21
Tues in Whitsun: Josh 2, Acts 8: 14-17, S. John 10: 1-10
Wed: Joshua 3, Luke 9: 37-50, Romans 2: 1-16
Thurs: Josh 4:1 - 5:1, Luke 9: 51-end, Romans 2: 17-end
Fri: Josh 5: 2-end, Luke 10: 1-16, Romans 3: 1-20
Sat: Josh 6: 1-20, Luke 10: 17-24, Mark 1: 1-13
NEXT SUNDAY (TRINITY SUNDAY): Proverbs 8: 1-4, 22-31, Romans 5: 1-5, S. John 16: 12-15