The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life


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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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Drinking blood? Yuck!

On 16th August, the eleventh Sunday after Trinity, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were Psalm 111, Ephesians 5:15-20, John 6:51-58.

For the last couple of weeks it seems that several people have been getting hunger pangs as a result of my talking about bread when commenting on the gospel passage from John. Today there is more on bread in the passage but I would like to pick up on something else which is in today’s Gospel and Epistle.

I’d like to turn to the matter of drink. We can survive longer without food than without drink so you could say this is the more important topic. However, all the references to food and drink are metaphorical so it doesn’t do to stretch the physical ideas too far. The difficulty for the Jews who were listening to Jesus was that they were taking him too literally. Taken literally, Jesus instruction to eat his flesh and drink his blood is outrageous. If we followed those instructions we would be cannibals. The Jews were not to drink any animal blood, never mind human blood. It’s not hard to understand why they were terribly upset by what Jesus was saying. Continue reading


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Candlemas

On 1st February 2015, the fourth Sunday of Epiphany, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were Psalm 24, Malachi 3:1-5, and Luke 2:22-40.

Candlemas, which we celebrated on Sunday, has many meanings. Perhaps the most poignant is the fact that Jesus is presented in the Temple as belonging to the Lord and Simeon has to tell Mary that she will suffer a sword piercing her soul. What a message to have to deliver! What a message for a young mum to hear! But the cross overshadowed Jesus from his conception. It was necessary for our salvation. Continue reading