A sermon and a baptism and bearing crosses.

September 16
St Stephen’s has had a family from Kiribati attending who brought their 4 month old forward for baptism. For them their faith is clear – it is Jesus who we follow, so I used the text for the day to explore that. However I have also had a couple of “bearing my cross” conversations recently which led me to the main section of the sermon.

The Marriage Amendment Bill

September 2 & 9.
I delivered this sermon at St Stephen’s last week as well.
Two comments. The first was when Denise read it she passed it on to our youngest son Kieran who read it and responded “Excellent!”
The second is a story. Having written this, I was part of a team at a quiz night being compered by two National Party MPs. The group was very mixed with a wide group of people present, and, yes, you would expect the usual sort of warm political banter to liven up the evening. However, one of the spot prizes dragged a guy up the front and he was confronted by a little speech to set the scene for the questions about how busy the MPs had been working that week on public issues. First question What had Parliament done with the drinking age? Second question “We also had the introduction of the Same Sex Marriage Bill – how do you feel about that?” The guy ended up saying he felt uncomfortable about that. However a number of people in the room felt more than uncomfortable – heads went down, eye contact broken off, and there was no escape from the antagonism that was being stoked up. I’ve re-run it in my mind and whether the set up should have been challenged. I didn’t and wish I had – knowing that would probably have wrecked the rest of the evening.