The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life

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Minding our own business

On 19 February Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 136: 1-9, 23-26Genesis 1.1-2.3, Matthew 6:25-34.

Recently I read an account of how at King’s Cross Station in London, which had a quarter of a million people passing through it every day, a small fire in November 1987 was able to grow so fierce that it killed 31 people and injured many more. Five days after the fire Desmond Fennell was appointed as a special investigator to study what had happened. In order to find the truth, he held public hearings over a period of 91 days where he interviewed and cross-examined many witnesses. After a year he published a 250 page report on his findings.

What Desmond Fennell had discovered was an institution, the London Underground, which had systems that were sure to lead to disaster at some point. Over the years a culture had grown up which meant that no one dared to stray out of their area of responsibility in any way. Each department had clear boundaries on what it did and would not accept advice or interference from anyone outside the department. Continue reading


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The challenge of the unusual

What happens when someone breaks ranks and does something unusual? Mostly the different way of doing things is resisted by those who were comfortable with the old way and see no need t change. Yet, it’s possible that God is doing a new thing which should be embraced and not resisted.

The readings at the service on Sunday 28 April were Acts 11:1-18, Psalm 148:1-6, Revelation 21:1-6, John 13:31-35. Here is my reflection from the day:

There’s a saying in English that ‘a change is as good as a rest’. I have to admit that not all change is particularly restful! It’s definitely possible to change an aspect of life and find it revitalises us. Even deciding to be in a different room can be helpful if you have something to do that you are finding stressful or tiring. Possibly doing a task in a different order might bring renewed energy. Too much of the same thing, day in day out, week in week out, can be tiring and demotivating.

On the other hand, change can be very stressful and tiring in itself. Moving house, though it may be something a person has chosen to do, is very stressful. There’s a lot of work, it’s difficult to find anything in the boxes you have packed, it’s necessary to work out once again where the shops are, what is the best route to work and so on.

Jesus’ disciples had a breathless three years with him. Their lifestyles changed from being that of fishermen, tax collector, freedom fighter, to being the pupils of an itinerant rabbi. Whereas before they had homes to live in, with Jesus they found themselves tramping around the country with no guarantee of bed or food each day. They had witnessed miracles; they’d stepped into the miraculous themselves as they went on missionary trips; there had been excitement as they went to Jerusalem with Jesus; and then it all came to a miserable halt. That halt was only brief before they were catapulted into the next phase of discipleship. Jesus rose from the dead; he ascended into heaven; the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost and the work began of sharing the Good News everywhere. Continue reading