The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life

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We are 10!!!

Anglicans of Second Life is ten years old. That is quite an achievement and well worth celebrating, which is what we are doing in July.

Throughout the month there will be displays of photos from our past. If you have been a member of our group in SL for some time you can take a trip down memory lane.

Events currently planned are:

  • Saturday 1 July 2-3pm. Canada Day dance hosted by our own Canadian superhero Captain Canuck!
  • Sunday 9 July 12noon Sea Sunday service followed at 1pm onwards by fun and games as the sim is flooded. Come to swim, boat and play accompanied by suitable maritime music.
  • Sunday 16 July Birthday Dance from 1-3pm at the Community Centre. Fairground rides, refreshments and more. Do come and join us.
  • Other events may be added. Watch out for notices.

Do come and join us for one of our events. Bring your friends, have a great time.

Helene Milena – Lay Pastor

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Bearing our cross

On 25 June Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 86:1-10, 16-17Genesis 21:8-21, Matthew 10:24-39.

“We all have our cross to bear” or “That’s my cross to carry” are sayings that have come into the English language from today’s Gospel passage. It may even be similar in other languages I suppose.

Usually this saying will refer to some problem in life that someone has to put up with. Saying “We all have our cross to bear” when someone complains about something in their life is not particularly sympathetic of course. It suggests burdens are part of everyone’s life and the person should just get on with things and stop complaining.

Jesus didn’t mean to indicate something that doesn’t work out well in life, some problem that had to be tolerated when he talked about taking up the cross. The cross in his time was an instrument of the worst possible way to put someone to death. It was long, drawn out, humiliating and very painful. It could last several days. A person was forced to carry the cross which would kill them, to where they would be executed. As they staggered through the streets, onlookers would shout insults at them and mock them, something that we know continued while crucifixion took place also. Continue reading

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What animal are you?

On 18 June Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 116: 1, 10-17Romans 5:1-8, Matthew 9:35-10:23.

As you probably know, I work as a counsellor in a part-time capacity. One of the requirements for counsellors is that they must have a monthly meeting with a supervisor. This is someone with special training and a lot of counselling experience. These meetings are designed to make sure the counsellor is working safely in the best interests of clients and also to provide somewhere to seek advice or insight.

The supervisor I had until recently was very fond of using one particular way to make me think about my clients. Once I had shared something of their situation or the point at which counselling had arrived, she often asked me to think what animal that client was like. It can be a really difficult question to answer. There are obviously many different animals to choose from. Some aspects of an animal may seem right in relation to a client and some may not. Usually, when I had done my best to choose and had explained which aspect was relevant and which seemed not to be, I found that I had arrived at a better understanding of the client in question. Although the question was tricky to answer, in finding an answer I regularly gained insight also. Continue reading

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Trinity Sunday

On 11 June, Trinity Sunday, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 8Isaiah 40:12-17, 27-end, Matthew 28:16-20.

I wonder how often you have said or heard: ‘in the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ or ‘one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ or ‘The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit’ or ‘Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning is now and shall be for ever.’ In a liturgical church such as the Anglican church, these set phrases trip off the tongue almost without thought. They are a formula we just learn off by heart from early in our faith journey as we hear them repeated week after week, or if you say the Daily Office as we do in the chapel here, day after day.

Today is Trinity Sunday. The church has celebrated this day since it was fixed as the Sunday after Pentecost by Pope John XXII in 1334. It is not a day like many others in the church year when we focus on a particular part of the story of Jesus or his disciples. There are no special rituals for the day. It is a day to remember who God is – his being not his doings. It’s a time to actually think about what we believe about God, what our experience has shown us, what the learning and writings of others have helped us to understand. It’s a day when the ‘Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ formula should not trip off our tongues without thought but should cause us to pause and think, even if only for a moment. Continue reading

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Speaking in tongues

On 4 June,  the feast of Pentecost, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 104:26-35Acts 2:1-21, John 7:37-39.

Many years ago, I followed a correspondence course on the Christian faith. It was provided by a Pentecostal church with a very strong emphasis on the Holy Spirit. I had a tutor to whom I sent the responses to the questions in the course. She sent feedback to me.

At one point in the course, there was a question about being baptised in the Spirit. It assumed that evidence of that event would be speaking in tongues. In my response to the question, I was honest and wrote that I had not experienced speaking in tongues. The tutor was rather perplexed as she considered that my previous answers on the course had shown evidence of the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. Her theology considered that if the Holy Spirit had been received by a person they would most definitely speak in tongues. I had to confirm that that had not been my experience. Perhaps she went away from our correspondence and had a rethink. Who knows? What I do know is that I didn’t fit what she had been taught. Continue reading

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I will not leave you orphaned

On 21 May,  Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 66:7-18Acts 17.22-31 , John 14.15-21.

In February, my mother died at the ripe old age of 100. A couple of days later I went to help remove her possessions from the care home where she had been living. While there, my sister made the comment that “we are now orphans”. Of course, that is true. We no longer have living parents, but the statement didn’t really mean a lot to me at the time.

In today’s Gospel reading, we continue to find out what Jesus said to his disciples in his last long conversation before his arrest. He was trying to prepare them for his absence and to give them hope in the face of such a huge change. Perhaps because of that statement by my sister, what stands out for me is the statement: “I will not leave you orphaned.” Continue reading

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Trust in me

On 14 May,  Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Acts 7:55-endPsalm 31:1-5, 15,16, 1 Peter 2:2-10, John 14:1-14.

Something which praying regularly with others in SL has given me is a broader scope for my prayers. When you pray with others from around the world, issues which might once have seemed remote suddenly seem much nearer and more relevant. With the whole world to pray for, there is certainly plenty to bring before God each day.

It is not necessary to look further than the newspapers or international news broadcasts to know that the world is not a very secure place. Tension in North Korea has been high on our list of concerns. Famine and war is affecting many countries in Africa. Refugees are beginning to cross the Mediterranean again on inadequate boats and people are losing their lives. Elections are being held in various parts of the world. Wisdom is needed for world leaders as they deal with the complexity of domestic and foreign policy. Fires have been burning in Florida while lack of rain is affecting the UK. Although some girls from Chibok have been released by Boko Haram, there are others to pray for. Natural and man-made disasters lurk around the corner for many of the world’s population; fear is their daily lot. Continue reading