December 2018

In The Royal wedding this year, Bishop Michael Curry of the Episcopal Church of America sounded the right note in his words to the Royals on God’s love. Afterwards people were talking about the sermon as much as about Meghan Markle’s dress! He quoted form the French Jesuit Priest, mystic, and palaeontologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955):

“The day will come when, after harnessing space, winds, the tide and gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world [humanity] will have discovered fire.

“God created this evolving universe because God is Love and each of us is God’s gift to the world. Our life purpose is to make a difference in transforming that world….”

For Teilhard, “love is the most universal, the most tremendous and the most mysterious of the cosmic forces.” Love is both human and divine. Divine love is the energy that brought the universe into being and binds it together. Human love is whatever energy we use to help divine love achieve its purpose….

Love of God and love of one another lies at the core of every traditional religion. Love not only permeates those religions, it transcends them and binds them together. Divine love embraces everyone and everything. There is nothing outside the divine embrace.

From Teilhard’s perspective, then, helping the human family move toward the next step of human evolution in love is the most urgent and challenging task of contemporary spirituality.

For Teilhard, love is the essential nature of God, and the best name for God (see 1 John 4:8). As Teilhard envisioned it, divine love is the self-expressive creative force that gave birth to our evolving universe. It is that same divine love that continuously keeps every atom of creation existing and moving forward on its grand evolutionary journey back to God.

It was for the love of all created beings that God the Father sent his Son into the world that we might learn of God’s love for us and that he might show us how to live “The Way” of love.

I think it’s time we talked more about God’s love in Church and to the world God loves. Too many people have a view of God that doesn’t set them free but is based on fear and an understanding of a God who thinks we have to be better or different than who if we are to be lovable by God. So I make no apology if I seem to be going on a bit about this in the pages of this magazine and in sermons. Christmas time of course is an especially important time to meditate upon the subject of Love Incarnate, of God being with us and amongst us in Jesus his son. Let’s share the good news this Christmas by giving people we know a service postcard of the times of services in the Ministry Area over the festive season.


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