2024 · Sermon

Sermon Notes April 2024

                                                            From Easter to Pentecost.

Theme: Healing of Jesus for our souls:

We will use the rhythm of The Lectionary readings to unpack this theme.

Settings: Following the Bible’s definition of “soul” as the seat of our emotions. We will broaden this to cover the centre and core of who we are as our mother board from where we are wired. Possibly capturing the Image of God within us.

So based on that loose definition. From the lectionary texts we will examine what causes our central core to become faulty, to malfunction and to disconnect.

And then within the text identify how Jesus offers us healing.

7th April 2024:

1. Possessed by possessions Acts 4:32-35
2. Fear and doubt John 20:19-31
3. ⁠Disunity Psalm 133
4. ⁠Deception 1 John 1:1-2:2

– be where the disciples are gathered John 20: 19-31
– ⁠be opened to hear and receive what Jesus is saying and doing John 20:19-31
– ⁠Blessings of Harmony Psalm 133
– ⁠Forgiveness 1 John 1:1-2:2

Suggested Practice:
Find a quiet place and be still so that you can use your senses for this,

Place yourself in the Gospel text of John 20:19-23

Acknowledge your Fear and allow yourself to see Jesus appear to you in the midst of your fear. Hear Jesus say to you,
“ Peace be with you “

See and look when Jesus shows you his wounds in his hands and his side

Feel the joy that fills you.

Listen and receive as Jesus commissions you.

“ Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you. “ Then he breathed on them and said. “ Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Do this for as many times as you are able in this week. If doubt is your fault then do the same steps above with the text from John 20: 24-31

From The Rector's Desk

From the rector’s desk – St Mary’s

Rejoice in the Lord you righteous, for it benefits the just to praise Him (Ps 33:1)

As we all settle into the year and our new routines, with schools open again and the economy opening up and people returning to work, I hope that you are finding your rhythm and making time for daily prayer and scripture reading. To all of you who are still in lockdown and isolation and struggling to overcome the impact of this pandemic on your daily lives, I encourage you to wait upon the Lord, He will see you through this.

It is important that I share with you what is happening in my ministry, as I serve you and it affects you. Your love and support and dedication to the service of Christ is what makes this possible at all and I do so appreciate you all.

As you are aware, we are experiencing some financial challenges in the Diocese which has resulted in a short term shortage of clergy. Due to restructuring – I will be the Priest in Charge at Merebank – St Michael’s and All Angels and at Isipingo – St James for the foreseeable future. Added to that, due to illness of the Rector, I will be Priest in Charge of Ezimbokodweni for the next six months. While I have self-supporting clergy there, it is still a big additional workload. I continue at Wentworth but have an Assistant Priest and a Retired Priest hard at work there. My Ministry will be rather different this year as we focus on restructuring.

Thus, I will be busy with Vestries in 6 Parishes over the next two months and therefore am limited in my ability to be at St Mary’s. I am grateful to Vanda who will take the lead role in leading services during this time, supported by Viola. We need to raise up more Lay Ministers to assist. It does mean that some of the Services will need to be Morning Prayer services, and some will have Reserved Sacrament but either service is an adoration of our God, a means to seek His grace and a celebration of our life in Christ. Adjusting to have Morning Prayer as a Principal Sunday service is one of the outcomes of restructuring that is going to require adaptation from the churches. With three of the five Parishes that I oversee only having me as their priest, and the sixth having three churches and only two assistant priests, it is simply impossible to have Eucharist at every church every Sunday.

Vestry will be held on 6 February. A motion will be put to Vestry to change the time back to 07h45 (Earlier would be even better). Please prayerfully consider this, it was always our service time and COVID caused the change. If we stay at 09h00 it further reduces my ability to be here on Sunday.

A very big thank you to the outgoing Council who has worked hard at every aspect of Church life throughout this trying time. I am most grateful to you all.

I hope to see more people returning to physical worship and that we will grow this year.

Be assured of my prayers for you all.

Love and Peace


From The Rector's Desk

From the Rector’s Desk – 7 January 2022

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and His Son Jesus Christ.

In the words of St Paul to the Colossians:

“We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you,  because we have heard about your faith in Christ Jesus and your love for all the saints— the faith and love proceeding from the hope stored up for you in heaven, of which you have already heard in the word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing.” (Col 1:3-6a).

Sometimes we forget that the impact of our faith, is not always visible, but is always significant. Our faith, though small, is used by God to continue His good work in the world through all
circumstances. Scripture says that even when we are faithless, He is faithful (2Tim 2 :13). God uses every ‘act’ of ours to grow His kingdom and achieve his purposes. Therefore, let us
recommit ourselves to the good works that he has prepared in advance for us to do. (Eph 2:10).

I thank God for you and for your prayers, for me and for the people of God. In this last month I have been reminded just how much the prayers of the faithful sustain us, and I thank God that he has called us to bear one another’s burden’s (Eph 4:2).

Let us therefore not grow weary of this ministry to one another, especially when so many people are experiencing so much loss, death and illness.

I pray for all of those who are recovering, it is a long slow road and when we are weary, it is a blessing to know that there are people who love us and uphold us in prayer.

2022 will demand a lot of us, but we look to our Saviour to provide us with the wisdom and the strength to endure. I think of all the learners awaiting their matric results, all those in the process of applying for university, and those who will be starting a new season of their education in a new school this year. Make every effort to apply yourselves fully to these opportunities given to you.

I pray for those whom God is calling to Parish Leadership. For Church Wardens, Church
Councillors and Lay Ministers. God has given various gifts to various people, all for the
edification of His body the Church, and as we seek to use these gifts, may God’s Church be strengthened.

I thank you all for the opportunity afforded me to fully recuperate before returning to work (on the 17th). This rest has been essential to me and to the reordering of my own life and ministry.

Be assured of my love and prayers for you all.


Daily Reflections

Psalm 1

Journeying through the Psalms

Life has two roads. The life of a faithful person in contrast to the life of a faithless person.

The writer begins his psalm by praising the joys of obeying God and refusing to listen to those who discredit or ridicule him.

Our friends and associates can have a profound influence on us, often in very subtle ways. If we insist on friendships with those who mock what God considers important, we might sin by becoming indifferent to God’s will. This attitude is the same as mocking.

Do your friends build up your faith, or do they tear it down?
True friends should help, not hinder, you to draw closer to God.

Let us pray:

Almighty Father,

Grant your Spirit in full measure to the leaders of our church so that they might think deeply about your Word and will and become fruitful and effective in building your church and extending your kingdom in the world.

Make them people of substance who are rooted deeply in your Word and useful in your kingdom service.