The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life

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Thy Kingdom Come

This year, Anglicans of Second Life is taking part in a global initiative called ‘Thy Kingdom Come’. In 2016 the Archbishops of Canterbury and York in England started a special time of prayer between Ascension Day and Pentecost, a time when we look forward to the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Church. The focus of prayer is for more people to come to know Jesus Christ. This has now become a global movement which involves many different Christian denominations.

This year the dates for Thy Kingdom Come are 10-20 May. There are several ways you can get involved. If you go to the Pledge to Pray page you can sign up as someone who is joining this global wave of prayer. You can have a dot shown on the map of the world to indicate where you are. As members of Anglicans of Second Life come from all over the world, we could add a lot of dots between us!

There are a lot of resources available. There are some wonderful videos including one discussing what it means to pray ‘Thy kingdom come’ and the Lord’s Prayer in sign language. There are also resources for prayer. There is a huge amount to explore there. I found the Methodist Church’s ‘Waiting in wonder’, a Novena and a Catholic Novena and a prayer journal among the new resources for 2018. There is something for everyone, whatever your preference. You can get your friends and family involved if you wish also.

On Epiphany Island we will have a labyrinth with the Lord’s Prayer prayer stations taken from the resources. We hope you will walk the labyrinth and pray. We will launch the initiative with prayer in the chapel at midnight and at noon on Ascension Day, 10 May. Please call into the chapel to pray at any time. You could also go to the cathedral and light a candle for anyone for whom you are praying. We will have a wonderful celebration in the cathedral at noon on the Feast of Pentecost, 20 May. This will be my last service as Lay Pastor, although I anticipate leading some services in the future if the Leadership Team invite me to.

Helene Milena – Lay Pastor

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Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church

On 19 November Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were  Psalm 1162 Corinthians 4, John 15:18-25.

(With thanks to Open Doors USA and Barnabas Aid for the resources which contributed to this sermon.)

Persecution on the basis of religion has been happening for millennia. A current example is the plight of the Rohingya in Myanmar who are being attacked by the army there because they are not Buddhists but mostly Muslim, with some Christians among them. It has been calculated that 75% of the world’s population lives in areas with severe religious restrictions.

While acknowledging that persecution happens to people of all religions, today we are concentrating specifically on Christians who suffer in this way. Christians in 60 countries face persecution from their governments or from those who live around them. The organisation Open Doors ranks the top 50 countries in terms of persecution every year in its World Watch List. (You can get more information on this here: In recent years persecution has increased and spread to new areas. The increase is particularly noticed in the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia. Continue reading

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Remembrance Sunday 2015

On 8th November, Remembrance Sunday, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were Psalm 62:5-12, Hebrews 9:24-28, Mark 1:14-20.

It’s odd the things that stick in our minds – snippets of memories from various parts of our lives. Sights, scents, words, people can suddenly pop up in our minds for no apparent reason. In among the jumbled memories of favourite toys, grandparents, pets, camping adventures, marriage, birth of children and so on, I still recall my exams taken at the age of sixteen. I still have the exam papers all these years later. One question particularly sticks with me from my history exam: “Describe the causes and effects of the Boer War.” Our history syllabus covered 1890 to the present day, being at that time 1969. It was a pretty miserable chunk of world history to study, mostly defined by war it seems to me. The Second Boer War ushered in the 20th Century. That faded into insignificance compared to the First World War. The Second World War followed just two decades after the First had finished. Sadly, we didn’t get time to study beyond WWII so we didn’t reach any really good news at all. Continue reading

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The Persistent Widow – From the Archives

This sermon was preached by Helene Milena in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island on Sunday, 20 October 2013. The readings were Psalm 119:97-104, Jeremiah 31:27-34, 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5 and Luke 18:1-8.

When the disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray, he gave them the Lord’s Prayer, a prayer many people use to this day. In this passage from Luke, Jesus used a parable to instruct his followers in the need to pray with persistence rather than half-heartedly. Continue reading

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Mourn with those who mourn

1936h0005On Wednesday I led our 2pm SLT service as Gareth was not available. I took the opportunity to share some thoughts on whether we can actually do as Paul tells us and ‘rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn’ if we are online Christians. Below you can read my reflection which I then adapted as a blog post for The Big Bible Project’s blog which I write for bi-monthly.

The readings in the service were Psalm 30, Romans 12:9-21, Matthew 5:1-12.

For some time now I have been writing a blog post for the Big Bible Project’s Digidisciples section. I write every second month on 30th of the month and I am due to deliver a post for Friday. I’d like to share some of my thoughts with you that I shall be putting into that blog post.

As it says on the blog : a digidisciple is someone who seeks to live out their Biblically-informed Christian faith in the digital space. Those of us writing in that category are asked to write ‘posts engaging with debates about what it means to be a disciple in the digital spaces/age’. Each month also has a theme, this month’s being ‘serendipity’ or God-incidences.

As many of you know, my father died recently. The experience of being bereaved has set me thinking about all sorts of things. One is whether in the digital spaces of Facebook, Twitter, Google Groups, Skype, Second Life and so on, we can genuinely do as Paul told us and ‘Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep’ (or ‘mourn with those who mourn’ as the New International Version translates it). If we can’t follow Paul’s advice for being authentic Christians online, are we wrong to even be here, claiming to be Christians in SL? Continue reading

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International Day of Peace

In Second Life, the International Day of Peace inspired an event called Spirit Fair, which was a combination of exhibitions and events over 48 hours. People of many faiths and philosophies worked together to provide this experience for the residents of SL, with around 2000 people visiting the Nirvana sim where the Fair took place. I was privileged to take part in the Fair as a representative of Anglicans of SL. In the Sunday noon service I shared something of that experience and about what James and Jesus have to say about peace and our walk as disciples.

The readings for the day were Psalm 1, James 3:13-4:3, 7-8a and Mark 9:30-37. My reflection is given below.

Friday was the International Day of Peace, a day when activities and celebrations took place all over the world. Peace Day was brought about by a United Nations’ resolution when the General Assembly opened in 1981. In 2002, 21 September was declared as a permanent date for the International Day of Peace. This year is its 30th anniversary.

This is part of what was said in the discussion about Peace Day in the U.N.:
Peace Day should be devoted to commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples…This day will serve as a reminder to all peoples that our organization, with all its limitations, is a living instrument in the service of peace and should serve all of us here within the organization as a constantly pealing bell reminding us that our permanent commitment, above all interests or differences of any kind, is to peace. Continue reading