Sunday, December 19, 2010

An up to date portrayal of the nativity??

A Very Clever video :-)


Names ...

A sermon based upon the Gospel reading this morning Matthew 1: 18-25

May my words and our thoughts be always pleasing to thy sight O Lord our strength and our redeemer. Amen

Names, I wonder do you know what your name means, where did you get your name from?

I know my name is from both of my Grandads - Robert Joseph

Today we have baptised Alexandru Joseph

When we look back beyond where our names came from we can discover the meanings of our names. I know for instance

Robert means Bright Fame

Joseph means he will add

If we were to query others

John means YAHWEH is gracious

Helen means "torch"

Victor Roman name meaning "one who is victorious" in Latin.

Gerald means - From a Germanic name meaning "rule of the spear"

Elizabeth means - my God is abundance

Alan - “little rock" or "handsome”

We have all been given our name for some reason, whether it was because our parents liked it or perhaps because of family members who shared them.

Today we have in our reading the reason behind the naming of Jesus, before he was even born. The name which Jesus was given as we heard in our gospel is very important as it outlines who he was going to be and what he was going to do.

In the busy-ness of this season, it is good to take time out to reflect upon the names given to Jesus in this reading today. As it not just Joseph and mary getting together, with a baby naming book and picking something which sounds nice. This is God intervening and giving to them the name which he has chosen, from the beginning of time.

Joseph was instructed by the angel to give the baby the name Jesus - the reason being that whe will save his people from their sins

We also see later in the reading - he is to have the name ‘Emmanuel which means God is with us’.

In our service today a lot has been going on, we began with lighting the fourth candle on our advent wreath- The candle of Love reminding us of God’s love for each and every one of us,

We confessed our sins to God, we recalled thorugh our psalms, canticles and readings of God’s love and his plan of salvation for us, we stood together as Alexandru Joseph was baptised and welcomed him as a member with us of the body of Christ, we prayed to God our father

All of these things we do sometimes without thinking but these when we pause to think are huge things made possible only by God coming amongst us, and dwelling here.

If it wasn’t for the babe in a manger that first christmas... we would not be here this morning singing praise to God and celebrating the fact of Immanuel ... God with Us, nor would we have the hope of our sins wiped away for good and all.

As we prepare to celebrate Christmas once again very soon, let us remember the true message, a message not just for a day of the year, but a message which the world needs to hear day, after day, month after month and year after year.

As Christians let us reclaim christmas as a celebration, as a time when we celebrate God intervening in the affairs of the world he created.

When he came amongst us as immanuel - God with us.

And also when he came as Jesus - saving us from our sins.

On thursday at the Holy Communion Service for the Housebound Parishioners I shared a story of

the Wright brothers, in december 1903 when they were successful in getting their "flying machine" off the ground.

Thrilled, they telegraphed this message to their sister Katherine: "We have actually flown 120 feet. Will be home for Christmas." Katherine hurried to the editor of the local newspaper and showed him the message. He glanced at it and said, "How nice. The boys will be home for Christmas." He totally missed the big news--man had flown!

Let us not now, nor ever forget the big news ... that Christmas is about the Baby in a manger all those years ago and the impact that baby needs to have on our lives and in our world today.

We have promised today to support the parents and God parent of Alexandru Joseph and countless others who have been baptised in the past. Let us all take that responsibility seriously and tell the generations of

Jesus Christ Immanuel.

Monday, December 06, 2010

A Techie Interlude to my blog

One of the things I do enjoy in my spare time is web site design.

In preparing for a website I am working on I have come across some good software

For my PC - Some PDF image extractor - which when you feed a PDF into it it will save all the photos contained within the said file as separate files ... handy if you need something like that!

for my Mac there is a wee thing called automator which is a very powerful built in thing ...check it out it seems great!

I am also getting to grips with a great piece of software from Microsoft (i know!) ... Expression web ... it is very handy for big websites which require templates.

Anyone else have any good pieces of software they find useful for website work?