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Trinity 14 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

Matthew 18, 21-36

Today the Church of England remembers the Battle of Britain. Between  1940 and 1941 the Royal Air Force fought the Luftwaffe against very heavy odds in a period commonly called ‘the blitz’. London, Portsmouth, Bath, Coventry, the Clyde in Glasgow – all these and more suffered from the bombing campaign of Germany. In September  of that same year RAF Bomber command began a series of night raids over Germany that marked a turning point in the war with Germany as the RAF disrupted German plans to invade Britain in what was known as Operation Sea Lion.

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Baptisms

On Sunday 20th August, Baby Zoe Athena Constantidis was welcomed into our congregation as she was baptised at St Paul’s. We send her and her family our congratulations and ask everyone to keep them in your prayers.

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Trinity 12 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

Jeremiah 15, 15-21; Rom 12, 9-end; Matt 16, 21-end

There are times when other people drag you down. Lynne and I are generally quite cheerful and positive people. In our various parishes over the years we have encountered some very gloomy people indeed. These are people for whom it is always December, but never Christmas; always Lent but never Easter. When we encounter such people it is such a temptation to enter into their gloominess and share the negative views that they are spouting out. In my last parish we decided that whenever anyone said anything negative we would counter it with the exact opposite – even if we are feeling the same as them, or sharing their views. It made quite a difference, in fact, and some people either gave up expressing anything to us, or genuinely started to be a bit more positive.

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Trinity 10 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

Isaiah 56,1, 6-8; Romans 11, 1-2, 29-32; Matthew 15, 21-28

It is funny how zoological my preaching seems to be at the moment. Some of you might remember a sermon I preached here a couple of years ago about how to eat an elephant – ‘in small pieces’. Then over the last few weeks we connected the little guinea pig type animal called a hyrax  to its nearest relative, which is an elephant;  then last week we had the irritated pig. Today we are keeping up the theme.

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Trinity 9 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

Romans 10,5-13; St. Matthew 14, 22-33

I had dinner the other evening with a couple I haven’t met before. They are Athenians but now live in America. They are here on a family holiday. The reason we met up is because we have a mutual friend who works alongside them in New York. So as we were chatting away Kosta came up with a phrase I hadn’t heard before and I immediately liked it. Here it is:

‘It is very difficult to teach a pig to dance, and what’s more it irritates the pig’.

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Trinity 6 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

Is 44, 6-8; Romans 8 12-25; Matt 13, 24-30, 36-43

I wonder how many of you know what a Hirax is? It is a funny little creature that you find in parts of north and east Africa. Strangely enough you also find them around the shores of the Sea of Galilee.

Hiraxes are a little bigger than guinea pigs, have special padded feet that allow them to climb on rocks and they are very good at jumping. They entertain tourists and pilgrims effectively when they visit Galilee. So far you might think I’m making it up, but the best is yet to come. Although this little mammal is like a large guinea pig the nearest animal to it genetically in the animal kingdom is the elephant. There you are – now you are convinced I’m telling you a pack of lies.

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Trinity 4 2017 | St. Paul’s Athens

When the Body of Christ, whose sign is the church, is invited forward to receive the signs of Christ’s body and blood, the bread and the wine, there are a number of choices for the words we can use. One option is ‘Draw near with faith. Receive the body of our Lord Jesus Christ which he gave for you, and his blood which he shed for you. Eat and drink in remembrance that Christ died for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith with thanksgiving.

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The Induction of the Revd. Canon Leonard Wallace Doolan

About sixty-five people gathered in St. Paul’s on June 30th, a swelteringly hot evening, to witness the Induction of Father Leonard. Among the guests were representatives of the Greek Orthodox Church, including the Bishop of Nazianzou, Theodoritos, and Bishop Gabriel. Also in attendance was Embassy staff, members of the Salvation Army and Apostoli. The Greek Evangelical Church was also represented. Last but not least, our outgoing and much-loved Father Malcolm and his wife, Olga. The Archdeacon paid tribute to Father Malcolm and thanked him for his work during his ministry here.

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Welcoming Fr Leonard Doolan

Following the inauguration of the new Chaplain next Friday, we would like to invite all Parishioners, old and new, from Kifissia to Glyfada to Voula to attend the Sung Eucharist next Sunday 2 July to welcome Fr Leonard Doolan as he celebrates his first service with us. We look forward to seeing you there!

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A “Mysterious Worshiper” at St Paul’s

The Mystery Worshipper, which produced this report, is run by shipoffools.com, the online magazine of Christian unrest. Mystery Worshippers are volunteers who visit churches of all denominations worldwide, leaving a calling card in the collection plate and posting a first-timer’s impression of services on Ship of Fools.

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