top of page


not a church
not a building
not a congregation
but a parish
loving our neighbour for 368 years here

not a personality
not a film star
not a society figure
but a friend of tax collectors and sinners
this is the one we follow here

not an idea
not a rumour
not a fashion
but a firm foundation
this is the one we worship here

Good morning
On this anniversary Sunday we sing our faith…










Lord Jesus
when all the words no longer make sentences
and the images are fixed in celluloid and oils
how might we recognise you
when you never live up to those images

When we are fed so much
in a visual age
and a google scrapbook
depicting what you are like
with blue eyes and white smile
perfect skin and blow dried hair
from the romance of religion
to the gothic horror of death
may we find our way
to the deep down truth
beyond image
beyond word
beyond emotion
that speaks the promise
‘you are the one’

All our religion give us:
may we sit lightly with it
knowing it is only human
half truths
words that are incomplete
images half formed
for we cannot portray
what is beyond image
that in truth
you are beyond the end of a sentence
deeper than the stroke of a paintbrush
much further than a conclusion to a creed

and when we ask
are you the one
we can only speak in faith
for we do not

our images
our words
and all hope-filled
and incomplete

So hear us
as we live beyond the end of prayer
into what is unknown
filled with wonder
and folded in promise

So be it

Are you the one?

               Luke  7:18-35

the one

are you the one
who walks with the lame
who touches the leper
and has nowhere to lay your head

are you the one who breaks bread with tax collectors
and sits at table with sinners
who speaks truth to power
and dethrones the powerful
blesses the poor
and the hungry
and the meek
and the persecuted

are you the one who is living water
and loves the poor
who mourns with the mourners
and weeps at death
who scandalises rule-makers
and turns the other cheek
anointed with perfume
and kissed with hair
who washes your servants feet
and denies being Messiah

are you the one
who crosses the line
questions truth
loves neighbour
takes the cup
and wills it gone

are you the one
who is a glutton and a drunkard
who throws crumbs to the dogs
and offends religion

who never gives an answer
because there is none
but invites us to look
for the movement of God
in the wake of the kingdom?








bottom of page