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St Matthews Church Oxhey Hertfordshire

Fr. David's sermon


13th March 2005

Fr David Shepherd

Lent V

'Then Jesus said, "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?" John 11v40

Where do we find glory? Some find it in nature and art; others look for worldly glory of the type that can be won by force of arms and that can be bought with money. Some in their pursuit of wealth and power seek it for themselves. Others renounce such things seeking instead the glory of God.

In his Gospel, St. John invites us to see the 'signs of glory' revealed by Jesus. Simply identified in the other Gospels as miracles, John wants us to reflect on the deeper meaning behind the outward event, so that we may grow in our faith in Jesus.

Glory is found amidst the ordinary and everyday. At a village wedding the wine runs out; glory is seen in the miraculous provision of more. Glory is revealed at the feeding of the five thousand with its gift of plenty coming from two loaves and five fishes. It is seen in the healing of a cripple, it shines like light in the darkness.

For John the supreme moment of glorious revelation comes with the crucifixion of Christ. At that moment he is glorified. So glory is seen at dark moments, in the unexpected and seemly inglorious.

In today's Gospel the glory of God is seen in a graveyard in the story of the raising of Lazarus. It is reflects the universal yet highly personal and particular experience of death and loss. Jesus shares in and understands this basic fact of life. We can identify several strands.

Amen

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