The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life


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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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Daddy, Daddy!

The Lord’s Prayer is familiar to so many of us. We may have learnt it as a child, said it often since and have almost come to take it for granted. Books, lectures and studies have been written about this prayer by some of the great minds of our faith. So what was a lowly Lay Pastor to do when faced with the task of putting together a reflection on the Lord’s Prayer? I shouted for help to our Father God and he supplied my needs. You can read the result below.

The readings for the Thursday service in the Cathedral were Isaiah 63:7-9, Psalm 97:1-8, Matthew 6:19-23.

For nearly two years now I have led services in this cathedral. It’s an immense privilege to stand here (if you refer to my avatar) or sit here (if you refer to the person behind the avatar) in front of you. It’s also both a responsibility and a challenge. A responsibility because I recognise that my position as worship leader means that my hearers and readers will probably take notice of what I say and I want to make sure that I am true to God’s Word, rather than leading anyone astray. A challenge because I need to find something to say in response to the readings of the day. I purposely nearly always stick to the set readings from the lectionary. I could pick and choose my texts but I want to engage with the whole of Scripture and the lectionary makes sure we cover most of it over a three year period. It also makes sure that I can’t wriggle out of readings which I find challenging!

There are occasions, such as yesterday when I read what the gospel is for today, when my heart sinks at the thought of putting together a reflection on that particular passage. It may seem odd of me to feel that way about the Lord’s Prayer. I have lots of memories associated with this prayer from right through my life. I don’t remember learning it but I know we said it daily at school. I do remember very clearly how much slower the new students at my high school said it compared to those more practised voices! Hearing the prayer said in Aramaic when I was in the Holy Land, in Bethlehem, was one of the highlights of my trip there. I love it when we see members of this congregation add the prayer in their own language. The Lord’s Prayer is special, so why the problem? Continue reading