Online Worship Archive

Welcome to the online service of worship for The Eighth Sunday After Trinity 2020

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MAYFIELD SALISBURY PARISH CHURCH

EDINBURGH

Online Worship Material Available 8.00am Every Sunday

Sunday 2 August 2020

 

Eighth Sunday after Trinity 

 

From Psalm 145

8 The Lord is gracious and merciful,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 The Lord is good to all,
   and his compassion is over all that he has made...

14 The Lord upholds all who are falling,
    and raises up all who are bowed down…..
17 The Lord is just in all his ways,
    and kind in all his doings.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
    to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desire of all who fear him;
    he also hears their cry, and saves them….

21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
    and all flesh will bless his holy name forever
and ever.

 

www.mayfieldsalisbury.org

5000 Copy

Mural in the choir Liebfrauenkirche, Ravensburg:
Scenes from the life of Christ by Gebhard Fugel, 1909

 

 AS A DIVERSE PEOPLE, THE CHURCH GATHERS TO WORSHIP ALMIGHTY GOD

 

Welcome   Revd Helen Alexander

Good morning to the members and friends of the congregation of Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church and welcome to all who are joining in this worship online for the 8th Sunday after Trinity.

Today we especially welcome returning children and young people who may be joining us again now we’re into August, though I know some may still be taking advantage of the holidays. I hope that you’ve all been having a good time, even though it’s a different summer from usual this year. Hillary, our Youth Worker will be talking to you after the prayer, and today we shall again hear those of you who helped to record the song ‘This is the Day’ and the ‘Amen’ a few weeks ago.

I invite all now to join me in a short period of silence in preparation for worship.

Scripture Sentences

Jesus said:

Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are you who are hungry now,
for you will be filled.
Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.

Let us pray

God and Father of all, we give thanks for all that comes to us as blessing: for the gift of life itself; for food and rest, home and shelter; for goodness of heart in friend and stranger; kindness upon which we can unfailingly depend as well as the surprise of light and delight that can catch us unawares.

And we seek to bless you even in difficulty as the wisdom of ages has encouraged us to do, that in good times and in unhappy circumstance we may learn faithfully to say: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ.’

Hear the confession of our hearts as in quietness we acknowledge that which is less than healthful, helpful or worthy in our lives. Grant us sincerity of spirit, willingness to set our minds and hearts aright again and grace to how and when we might make amends.

Grant us openness of heart to receive the gifts that are fully offered to us: the blessing of grace; the wonder of forgiveness and new beginnings; simplicity of heart and integrity of spirit; the capacity for laughter and the willingness to cry tears of sadness or joy; courage for our journey on earth and hope of heaven; through our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Collect

Almighty God whose blessed Son Jesus Christ fed the hungry with the bread of his life and the word of his kingdom, renew your people with your heavenly grace, and in all our weakness sustain us by Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, the true and living bread, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

 

Children’s Message   Hillary Leslie    Please note: Your audio may be need to be increased for this video.

Good morning everyone! I hope you’ve been having a really nice summer so far and have been able to spend time relaxing with your friends and family. I’ve been thinking about all of you and hope you continue to stay safe and healthy.

For my summer holidays this year, I came up north to Pitlochry to visit with my husband’s parents. In normal times, we’d be having almost every meal indoors together, sitting at the dining room table, or maybe eating some pizza on the couch with a film on the tv! But because of the coronavirus, we’ve been having a lot of picnics outside to physically distance ourselves (not always easy when it rains so much in Scotland!).

Picnics and BBQs have always been two of my favourite spring and summer activities to do with friends, and they’ve become even more loved this year. We’ll sit on a blanket in the grass and eat together, each coming with our own picnic baskets or cooler full of food, but still feeling as though we are part of the same meal. Picnics can be planned, or they can just happen like when we are going hill walking and we see a nice place to rest and decide to eat there.

Have any of you been on a picnic or had a BBQ outside with your friends this summer? Do you have a favourite picnic snack? I love to munch on fresh strawberries and olives!

Whether a picnic is planned or not, they are always relaxed. You make the best with what you have brought, not worrying if you forgot forks or kitchen roll. It’s okay if the blanket gets covered in grass and the wind blows your hair in your face, and the food always tastes delicious!

Picnics are so fun, carefree and relaxing that we sometimes use the word ‘picnic’ to describe other easy things like: ‘that walk was a picnic’ or ‘tonight’s homework was a picnic.’ Picnics are a nice way to have fun, to relax, and to enjoy the outdoors and one another’s company (and to safely see friends and family this summer!).

In this morning’s Bible story, Jesus has been outside preaching when it becomes time for dinner. The disciples don’t have enough food for all of the thousands of people there, so they want to send them away. But Jesus doesn’t want to send them away, so He performs the miracle of feeding five thousand people – can you imagine that?! With just a small amount of food - five loaves and two fish - Jesus feeds everybody, and they end up with more than enough food for everyone!

My favourite part of the story is right before Jesus feeds the people when he tells them all to ‘sit down on the grass.’ All of these people are in a tricky situation – they’re hungry, tired, homesick, darkness is approaching and there’s not enough food to go around for everyone. But in that moment, Jesus says, ‘let’s have a picnic!’ when he asks them to sit on the grass.

Jesus is reminding us that when things seem hard and challenging, we can sit back, thank God, and enjoy what we have. Sometimes we have more than we realise, and it’s enough to fill us with joy and feed our souls. If we come together bringing our problems and the things that are hard and spend time together sharing our feelings with others, we can learn to enjoy ourselves even when life gets really difficult. There’s more than enough love to go around. Sitting outdoors in God’s creation is the perfect spot to share a meal, and a picnic is a great way to remind us of all the blessings we have from God so that we may find happiness.

My hope is that as the summer holidays continue, and you have more picnics and BBQs with your family and friends, that they can be a reminder of the joy and blessings that God gives us even during really hard times.

Let’s close our eyes and pray together, repeating after me:

Dear God, Thank you for the summertime,
For picnics and BBQs with friends,
And for rest during a hard year.
Help me to sit down on the grass,
And remember my blessings.
Please be with those who are lonely, sad or hungry today,
And surround them with your love and the love of others.
Amen.

HYMN 194  This is the day   The Lord's Day

This is the day,
this is the day that the Lord has made,
that the Lord has made.
We will rejoice,
we will rejoice and be glad in it
and be glad in it.
This is the day that the Lord has made,
we will rejoice and be glad in it.
This is the day,
this is the day that the Lord has made.

This is the day,
this is the day when he rose again,
when he rose again.
We will rejoice,
we will rejoice and be glad in it,
and be glad in it.
This is the day when he rose again,
we will rejoice and be glad in it.
This is the day,
this is the day when he rose again.

This is the day,
this is the day when the Spirit came,
when the Spirit came.
We will rejoice,
we will rejoice and be glad in it,
and be glad in it.
This is the day when the Spirit came.
we will rejoice and be glad in it.
This is the day,
this is the day when the Spirit came.

Author unknown
Played by Kate Pearson
Sung by the Mayfield Salisbury Youth

 

WE LISTEN FOR THE SPIRIT OF GOD

 

Reading   Genesis 32: 22 – 31 NRSVA     Andrew Cubie

Preface

‘Having worked for his uncle Laban for many turbulent and discordant years, Jacob begins a long journey home to his father’s land with his wives Leah and Rachel and his many flocks and herds. Anticipating a meeting with his brother Esau whom he had tricked of his birthright many years before, he sends gifts to Esau in advance, in the hope of appeasing him.’ 

 

Jacob Wrestles at Peniel

22 The same night he got up and took his two wives, his two maids, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23 He took them and sent them across the stream, and likewise everything that he had. 24 Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. 25 When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he struck him on the hip socket; and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. 26 Then he said, ‘Let me go, for the day is breaking.’ But Jacob said, ‘I will not let you go, unless you bless me.’ 27 So he said to him, ‘What is your name?’ And he said, ‘Jacob.’ 28 Then the man said, ‘You shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with humans, and have prevailed.’ 29 Then Jacob asked him, ‘Please tell me your name.’ But he said, ‘Why is it that you ask my name?’ And there he blessed him. 30 So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, ‘For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life is preserved.’ 31 The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip.

 

Reading  St Matthew 14: 13 – 21   NRSVA    Hillary Leslie

Feeding the Five Thousand

13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. 15 When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, ‘This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.’ 16 Jesus said to them, ‘They need not go away; you give them something to eat.’ 17 They replied, ‘We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.’ 18 And he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’ 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.

 

Reflection   Revd Helen Alexander

At first sight there may seem little connection between St Matthew’s account of the feeding of the large crowd near the Lake of Galilee, and the strange story of Jacob’s night-time struggle with his unnamed assailant that we’ve heard in the first lesson.

A connection may reveal itself in due course. But first: the story from Genesis for which the writer probably drew on strands of ancient folklore about river spirits and hauntings, the meaning of names for people and places, and perhaps also legendary origins of a ritual dance involving limping movements.

However, the highlight of the story is Jacob’s titanic struggle with a powerful stranger who turned out to be no less than God who blessed Jacob in the end and renamed him ‘Israel’ thereby confirming that he, Jacob was worthy to be the father of what would become the 12 tribes of Israel, because he had struggled with God and had prevailed.

Jacob had struggled all his life: with his family of origin, Laban his father-in-law and his wives. Despite Leah’s fecundity, Jacob continued to prefer his younger wife Rachel, thereby perpetuating domestic trouble and strife. He was still something of a trickster, finally turning the tables on his equally wily father-in-law, and burning his boats as he left for his home country with his wives, children and many possessions. Now, he dreaded the inevitable meeting with his brother Esau whom he feared would be seeking revenge over the matter of the stolen birth-right many years before.

Small wonder then that Jacob’s thoughts were likely to have matched the darkness of his surroundings as night fell in the deep gorge of the river Jabbok. Anxieties can become magnified in the dead of night and made worse by the haunting of a guilty conscience. Of course, the writer of Genesis doesn’t say this exactly. In those days psychological insights were hinted at rather than being spelt out. But it surely doesn’t take much imagination to enter into Jacob’s state of mind at this decisive stage in his journey and his troubled life.

Some of us might know from experience what it is to pass a long night in struggle with our deepest selves, if not with God - if indeed it’s possible to make a distinction.

It’s likely that the Book of Genesis reached its present form sometime in the 6th Century BCE well after the lives of the early patriarchs, the division of the nation into a Northern and Southern Kingdom and, more recently, the Babylonian exile from Jerusalem. Thus the first readers of Genesis already had the struggle of generations behind them, enabling them to identify with their ancient ancestor Jacob in his agonisingly uncertain predicament.

Fortunately however at least some of them probably also identified with the blessing which was finally given to Jacob who had become Israel, as dawn broke over the mountains at Peniel.

We read about blessing a great deal in the Old Testament. Perhaps it’s hard for us fully to enter into the profundity of its meaning for ancient cultures. The Irish priest, philosopher and poet John O’Donohue who died prematurely in 2008 felt strongly that our contemporary world needed ‘to retrieve the lost art of blessing’. In the final chapter of his book Benedictus he wrote: ‘Despite all the darkness, the human hope is based on the instinct that at the deepest level of reality some intimate kindness holds sway. This is the heart of blessing. To believe in blessing is to believe that our being here, our very presence in the world, is itself the first gift, the primal blessing.’ (1)

O’Donohue suggests that the power of blessing might reside in our longing for fulfilment ‘where loss will be made good, where blindness will transform into vision, where damage will be made whole, where the clenched question will open in the house of surprise, where the travails of a life’s journey will enjoy a homecoming.’ (2)

These words along with today’s story of the blessing of Jacob remind me of a closing scene in Marilynne Robinson’s novel Gilead which is set in the American State of Iowa in the mid-1950s. Written in the form of a letter from the ageing Reverend John Ames to his young son, the novel includes the re-appearance after a long absence of Jack Boughton, the son of Ames’ great friend and neighbour. From earliest times, Jack has been a trouble to his family and a great sorrow to all who continue to love him despite his dissolute ways. His return as an adult to the home of his childhood is a source of intense worry to Ames who finds his presence disturbing as he remembers problems of the past and has conversations with Jack that instil fears for the present and the future for his own family and that of his friend. He fears that this troubled man will never mend his ways. In the closing pages of the novel, Ames meets Jack who is walking to the bus stop, resolved finally to leave his family and the town of Gilead. They have a last conversation during which the old minister is filled with compassion for this lonely, half-penitent yet unreformed man. He offers him his blessing and to his surprise Jack accepts. There at the bus stop the saintly minister pronounces the beautiful blessing from the Book of Numbers: ‘The Lord make his face to shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up his countenance upon thee and give thee peace.(3)

No precis of mine can match the moving description of this scene in its solemn heartfelt grace. It calls to mind the Sacrament of Baptism when traditionally this great Biblical blessing is said over the head of an infant or new member of the church whatever his or her age. There’s power in these ancient words that combined with the flowing simplicity of water, and the love and commitment of family and friends within the company of the church, always seem to me to convey something profound yet inexpressible.

And so to the Gospel for today and another blessing: that pronounced by Jesus over the loaves and fishes at the gathering of the 5000, not forgetting the woman and children. It would doubtless have taken the form of a traditional Jewish blessing before a meal. However, no member of the Christian church can read of Jesus, meals and blessings without thinking of the Sacrament of Holy Communion and the memorable words that are said immediately before the great Prayer of Thanksgiving:

As the Lord Jesus, the same night in which he was betrayed took bread, I take these elements of bread and wine to be set apart from all common uses to this holy use and mystery; and as he gave thanks and blessed, let us draw near to God and offer him our prayers and thanksgiving. (4)

To bless and to be blessed is at the heart of the Christian sacraments, sadly subject to restriction for us meantime, but surely available to us whenever we can fully participate in them together again. And whatever our circumstance, faith or creed, blessing reaches to the heart of our lives and relationships. This surely is our hope and our joy.

1. John O’Donohue Benedictus: A Book of Blessings Bantam Press 2007 p 199
2. Benedictus p 211
3. Marilynne Robinson Gilead Virago 2005 p 275
4. Book of Common Order of the Church of Scotland St Andrew Press 1994 p 131

  

RESPONSE TO THE SPIRIT OF GOD WITHIN

 

Voluntary    James Pearson - Cello & Kate Pearson - Chamber Organ 

Largo from Sonata in D for cello and continuo         Georg Philipp Telemann (1681-1767)

 

Thanksgiving and Intercession  Revd Helen Alexander 

We pray today for all who are struggling with uncertainties in this holiday season: people worrying about bookings they have made; those who are abroad thinking about their safety and the restrictions to be imposed when they return; those who run airports and airlines, stations and seaports; restaurateurs and managers of hotels and businesses dependent on tourists at home or abroad; all who are trying desperately to balance safety with pleasure and economic necessity.

We pray for the Governments of the United Kingdom sometimes dealing with competing interests and demands. We remember all who are called to make difficult decisions and those who are obliged to translate these into practice.

And we think of nations beyond this country: the vast Continent of Europe where disease knows no national boundary and where an outbreak in one country so easily threatens the welfare of all. We think of nations including our own that managed the first assault of the coronavirus and are now bracing for the possibility of another. And we think of countries that fear they are on the threshold of devastating disease; all those anywhere who live cheek by jowl with many others: people in vast conurbations, in sprawling refugee camps, in shanty towns and makeshift shelters, in tower blocks or alone in the streets, or in prison. We pray for those who are frightened for themselves and those they love, for all who struggle with inadequate sanitation and provisions as well as for those driven to recklessness in foolish spontaneity or in calculated disregard of those around them.

We pray for people who feel overwhelmed in these days; those who are troubled mentally and who wrestle with faith in people, in leaders, in God. We pray for people with chronic illness who worry about receiving treatment at the time that they need it, as well as those who have contracted the coronavirus at home and abroad. We pray for those who are dying, those who care for and wait with them, and those grieving loss.

We pray for those we love, naming them silently as they come to our minds now…….

And we offer gratitude and thanksgiving for all that we know to be helpful, hopeful and good: for the healing power of nature; for ears that have become better attuned to bird song and music and poetry; for eyes more alert to the colour of a flower, the grace of a tree, the beauty of a sunset; for willingness to stop and stare; to inhale the perfume of a rose, to look into another’s eyes, to appreciate a smile; to enjoy humour, wisdom and grace.

And we commit all we love, humankind, our world to the grace of God Father, Son and Holy Spirit, remembering all who are already gathered in the company of heaven, and making our prayer for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory. For ever and ever. Amen.

 

HYMN 739   The Church's one foundation    Aurelia

The Church's one foundation
is Jesus Christ her Lord:
she is his new creation
by water and the word;
from heaven he came and sought her
to be his holy bride;
with his own blood he bought her,
and for her life he died.

Called forth from every nation,
yet one o'er all the earth,
her charter of salvation:
one Lord, one faith, one birth.
One holy name she blesses,
and shares one holy food,
as to one hope she presses,
with every grace endued.

In toil and tribulation,
and tumult of her war,
she waits the consummation
of peace for evermore,
till with the vision glorious
her longing eyes are blest,
and the great Church victorious
shall be the Church at rest.

Yet she on earth has union
with God the Three in One,
and mystical communion
with those whose rest is won.
O happy ones and holy!
Lord, give us grace that we,
like them, the meek and lowly,
on high may dwell with thee.

Samuel John Stone (1839-1900) (alt.)
Played by Kate Pearson, Sung by Milda Zinkus, soprano.

 

BENEDICTION 

Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the Son of peace to you
And the blessing of God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you all.

 

AMEN   Mayfield Salisbury Youth

  

  

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INTIMATIONS

 

CHRISTIAN AID URGENT APPEAL

We recently received the following urgent appeal from Christian Aid, which we very much hope you will consider supporting

Last year, over 45 million people were forced from their homes by conflict and violence. Families who have suffered so much need your help now more than ever to face the deadly threat of coronavirus. Millions of lives are at stake.

Coronavirus is the latest threat to their safety. Families who have fled conflict and hunger are now living in crowded camps where social distancing is impossible. In these places there is limited access to medical care, clean water or enough food, making people extremely vulnerable to coronavirus. Here, the virus is likely to be even more deadly than it has been in the UK. Deaths are already mounting.

We’ve joined the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) to raise urgent funds for communities living in extreme poverty and conflict in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Please help us protect refugees and vulnerable people in the world’s most fragile places today.


We’re already responding to the Covid-19 outbreak by delivering life-saving information and hygiene support, personal protective equipment and food packages to communities in need. Your donation can help us to:

  • provide families with clean water, soap and information on keeping themselves safe

  • give frontline medical and aid workers the equipment and supplies they need to care for the vulnerable and sick

  • ensure families get enough food to prevent malnutrition, particularly amongst children

Help families who have lost everything as they face this deadly threat.

If you’d like to contribute, click on the link Please donate now or visit the Christian Aid website at www.christianaid.org.uk Cash and cheques cannot currently be accepted, but you can make a donation by telephone on 020 7523 2269. Thank you!          The Christian Aid Committee

 

5 MINUTES’ PEACE RE-OPENING ON 5th AUGUST We are delighted to announce that 5 Minutes’ Peace, opening the Sanctuary of Mayfield Salisbury Church to members of the congregation and the wider public for private prayer and meditation, will recommence this week. It will take place every Wednesday from 6:30pm to 8:00pm, starting on Wednesday 5th August. Strict social distancing protocols will be in operation and visitors must wear a face covering. Come and experience once again the beauty and peace to be found within our Sanctuary.

 

VACANCY UPDATE Over the past few months the Nominating Committee has met several times courtesy of Zoom which on the whole has worked very well for us. As you may be aware the Commission of the General Assembly recently issued guidance to assist congregations and Nominating Committees during the Covid-19 pandemic. You will wish to know that in the light of this and the interest expressed in the vacancy to date we have set a deadline of 10 August for applications which is now advertised on the Church of Scotland website.

The Nominating Committee will have to rely on different methods for assessing candidates to those normally used but we are confident that we will be able to make progress. When we reach the point of a sole nominee preaching we will do our best to ensure that all those entitled to vote will be able to see and hear the nominee conduct the same act of worship and be able to participate in the vote. Depending on the Covid-19 restrictions applying at the time, this part of the process may take longer than usual and we will issue advice and guidance on the process when we reach that stage.

Meantime we ask you to keep us in your prayers.         Boyd McAdam. Convener

 

YOUTH UPDATE

Youth & Parent Surveys now available: Hillary has created surveys for the parents and youth looking over the 2019-20 youth programming term, including the virtual programming since March. These are very helpful to continually improve youth programming at MSPC, and to aid with the planning process for the upcoming term, so if you haven't gotten a copy and would like to take part, please get in touch with Hillary!

Virtual Youth Programming: The *virtual* youth schedule for the month of July can be accessed on the church website under the 'Young People' tab. All youth programming will be held over Zoom. New virtual youth consent forms must be sent to Hillary before attending a session. For log-in access to the Zoom sessions, or to get a copy of the consent forms, please contact Hillary!

 

NEXT SUNDAY’S READINGS Genesis 37: 1 – 4, 12 – 28 and St Matthew 14: 22 – 33

 

ONLINE OFFERING / DONATION The Church is very grateful to all those who give by standing order enabling us to maintain a large portion of our income through these difficult times. We now offer the ability to contribute to our work electronically through the ‘give.net’ facility which appears on the home page of the Church’s website. This provides the possibility of adding Gift Aid to donations. There is also a direct link to the new system which is: https://www.give.net/20311853    With best wishes, Hugh Somerville, Free Will Offerings Treasurer

 

Forthcoming Deadlines

Order of service for next week: Thursday at 6.00pm.

Next Grapevine Friday 28 August at 6.00pm.

Please send submissions to the Church Manager, William Mearns.

Phone: 0780 801 1234 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Books for the Journey

My Sour-Sweet Days: George Herbert and the Journey of the Soul by Mark Oakley.

Luminaries: Twenty lives that illuminate the Christian Way by Rowan Williams.

 

Copyright Notices

SCRIPTURE QUOTATIONS are from New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church holds a CCLI Streaming License: #88916.

 

  

Social Media

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www.youtube.com/user/MayfieldSalisbChurch

www.flickr.com/photos/98063709@N06/

Youth Instagram: the.msyg

 www.mayfieldsalisbury.org

Scottish Charity Number SC000785

Online Offering

Contact Information

Mayfield Salisbury Parish Church,
18 West Mayfield,
Edinburgh,
EH9 1TQ

0131 667 1522 / 0780 801 1234

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
Scottish Charity Number: SC000785

Quotations

  • Because God is both knowable and unknowable the tension of the symbol, the multilayers of the myth and the openness of the poetic are all vital to our desire to celebrate the Mystery to whom we relate and in whom we have our being.
    Mark Oakley

  • You must love him as he is: neither God, nor spirit, nor image; even more, the One without commingling, pure, luminous ...

    Meister Eckhart

  • The purpose of our life is God's glory. However lowly a life is, that is what makes it great.
    Oscar Romero

  • Faith may justify bigotry or fanaticism, as Church history tragically witnesses. It needs a safeguard. If it is not animated as it were by the greatest of the theological virtues (love), faith can become defective.
    Thomas Norris

  • Dry not, dry not, your tears of love eternal! Only to eyes that fail to weep does this world seem so dull and dead. Dry not, dry not, those long, sad tears of love.
    Johann von Goette

  • The post modern paradigm manifests itself as a unity which preserves diversity and diversity which strives after unity.
    David Bosch

  • There is only one assertion that requires no evidence. Children are a sacred trust...Unless we care properly for our children, we shall never build a better world.
    'A Good Childhood’ The Children’s Society

  • These are only hints and guesses, hints followed by guesses; and the rest is prayer.
    'The Dry Salvages' T.S.Eliot

  • According to strict truth, God is incomprehensible, and incapable of being measured.
    Origen

  • Myth is a story about the way things never were, but always are.
    Thomas Mann

  • In the darkness ...The child of your love - and now become as the most hated one - the one You have thrown away as unwanted - unloved ..... The darkness is so dark .... I have no faith.
    Mother Teresa

  • I love the Bible. I owe my faith and my life to the Bible and its liberating message. It is in the Bible that I first met Jesus ... I too am included in God's embrace.
    Gene Robinson

  • It is this great absence that is like a presence, that compels me to address it without hope of a reply ....
    R.S. Thomas

  • Faith is not a proud self-consistent philosophy. It involves maintaining oneself between contradictions that can't be solved by analysis. It is therefore a living response to the grace of God as revealed in fragile lives.
    Mark Oakley

  • Any religion which does not say that God is hidden is not true.
    Blaise Pascal

  • The contemporary Church is losing aspects of its wide and generous memory and therefore condemning itself to become a 'swimming pool Church' - one that has all the noise coming from the shallow end.
    Mark Oakley

  • For all your doctrinal headaches take Paradox.
    Mark Oakley

  • The true vision and the true knowledge of what we seek consists precisely in not seeing, in an awareness that our goal transcends all knowledge and is everywhere cut off from us by the darkness of incomprehensibility.
    St Gregory of Nyssa

  • Death, death be hanged, the Lord has promised me that I shall live. This I believe!
    Martin Luther

  • We feel that even when all possible scientific questions have been answered, the problems of life have not been put to rest.
    Wittgenstein

  • Religion is the flight of the alone to the Alone.
    Plotinus

  • Stupid clergymen appeal quite directly to a Bible passage directly understood ....
    Soren Kirkegaard

  • What is the point of the arts of reading and criticism as long as the ecclesiastical interpretation of the Bible, Protestant as well as Catholic, is cultivated as ever?
    Friedrich Nietzsche

  • A figure like Ecclesiast, rugged and luminous, chants in the dark a text that is the answer, although obscure.
    Wallace Stevens

  • Myth is the poetry of the soul.
    Sara Maitland

  • Our loss of the ability to think mythically, poetically, allegorically, creatively, theologically, and artfully is a greater threat to our religious experience than anything good scientists have to report ...
    Sara Maitland

  • In general, Zen attitude is that words and truth are incompatible, or at least that no words can capture truth.
    Douglas Hofstadter

  • 'God' is a one word poem
    Rowan Williams

  • What is today? Today is eternity.
    Meister Eckhart

  • Apprehend God in all things, for God is in all things.
    Meister Eckhart

  • The most powerful hunger we have, mostly suppressed and misdirected, is the hunger for God.
    Miroslav Volf

  • We frequently judge that things are as we wish them to be, for through personal feeling true perspective is easily lost.
    Thomas a Kempis

  • Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.
    Rabindranath Tagore

  • God is the beyond in our midst.
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  • 'God is not the answer, God is the question.'
    Herbert McCabe