Autumn 2017

31 March 2017


 

'I am the light of the world'

In this Autumn edition of Madonna, our daily prayers feature a more personal and intimate exploration of the Gospel stories of the Lenten season. Each day, our guest writer delves into the Gospel to find a way out of the darkness that they find themselves in. 

Making music with what remains

Readers of the Melbourne Herald Sun might remember the very moving interview journalist Hamish McLachlan conducted with Angie Cunningham over a five-month period. Angie was a young woman who was afflicted in 2012 with a terrible motor neurone disease. She was also a friend of mine, and recently I wrote something on the theme of ‘connection’ which centred around her story.

A search for hope amidst grief

After 27 years in the funeral business, Patsy Healy has come to the fierce belief that death is not the end, but the beginning. She knows how much life and energy goes into dying. She felt grief's raw and brutal touch when she delivered a stillborn daughter many years ago. She's journeyed with hundreds, maybe thousands, of families as they prepare to bury their loved one.

Life and loss at Gethsemane Community

A seismic event happened in December 2014. Gethsemane Community - an organization in Sydney who offer disability services and support - had been home to four long-term residents with mental illness and other disabilities. On 18 December, just before dinner, we heard an ambulance siren. Robert, one of the Community residents, was due home - but we didn't make the connection until we got a call from Neuro ICU at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. Robert had fallen on the street, hit his head on concrete and suffered severe inter-cranial bleeding.

The same old crowd

The week leading to Easter begins with the account of Palm Sunday where Jesus is caught up in that rather triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The mood of the crowd, at first ecstatic with joy and hope, takes a turn. The Palm Sunday story has long fascinated me – it paints an aspect of human nature that has changed little over the millennia.

Faith & spirituality in review

I confess that I came to Freedom in the Spirit without great enthusiasm. In my prayer and preaching I find more life in the stories and images of the Gospels than in the discursive texts. Because St Paul’s letters are light on stories I leave them aside.