|from Telegraph website|
But back to the question. I thought Bishop Chartres' sermon was excellent. Short - 8 minutes. Not parsonical - let the reader understand, and beware! Full of content. Straightforward and practical. I liked the fact that it was addressed to the couple almost entirely, but its message was for anyone. "In a sense, every wedding is a royal wedding, with the bride and groom as king and queen of creation, making a new life together...." The strapline from Catherine of Siena, "Be who God meant you to be, and you will set the world on fire," is a great truth and the theme of helping your partner to fulfil their potential of course ran through the sermon. "In marriage we are seeking to bring one another into fuller life." "The more we give of self, the richer we become in soul" - the sermon was jam-packed with quotable quotes, or, rather, pithy nuggets to chew on. Marriage is a reflection of God's generous love to the world - the Bishop gave a beautiful one-sentence summary of the Christian good news.
On the importance of the marriage ceremony, he profoundly pointed out the significance of the decision, the public "I will": "It is of course very hard to wean ourselves away from self-centredness. People can dream of such a thing but that hope should not be fulfilled without a solemn decision that, whatever the difficulties, we are committed to the way of generous love." That would be part of my answer to 'Brotherly Love's' comment on my last post. Although in practice I too became 'flexible' with regard to couples' pre-marital sex, in principle true love needs first to make that public covenant commitment, which turns the hopeful dream into practical reality. Until then it remains a conditional love - which is love minus. That remains the best way.
|from Westminster Abbey website|
And I almost forgot this postscript to the day from YouTube, Westminster Abbey verger celebrates a good day at the office. It reminds me the way children would skip back from the communion rail in Hazel Grove - "How appropriate!" I used to think.