The Dean of Salisbury - photo by Ash Mills
 

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by ben last modified 16 May, 2019 03:06 PM

The Very Revd Nicholas Papadopulos, Dean of Salisbury

“Come, Holy Spirit.” With these words the Archbishops of Canterbury and York conclude a recent letter to the clergy. They asked us all to pray these words in the days between Ascension and Pentecost. The Archbishops recall how the disciples gathered after Jesus’s Ascension and devoted themselves to prayer, awaiting the outpouring of the Spirit that he had promised. In particular, they asked us to pray that that same Spirit might work in the lives of five friends “…who have not responded with their ‘Yes’ to God’s call”.

But these days of prayer, and the global movement now associated with them, have a different three-word strapline, taken from another prayer. “Thy Kingdom Come”.

“Teach us to pray” say the disciples. “When you pray, say…” responds Jesus, introducing some of the most well-known words in Scripture.

“Thy Kingdom Come” is (of course) the first half of the second petition of the Lord’s Prayer. If we can get beyond its familiarity, it’s a breath-taking prayer. It’s that God’s perfect rule – God’s justice, righteousness, God’s good purposes – should be realised.

Here. Now. In a messy and imperfect world that is riven with cynicism, poverty, and despair.

It’s an amazing thing to pray. And isn’t it a rather bigger prayer than a prayer for five friends?

Now, I love that we’ll all be praying together. I look forward to welcoming many of you to the Cathedral for a joyous Beacon event. And I will pray for five friends, because if prayer is like charity then it starts at home. But…if prayer is like charity, then it cannot end at home. So I will also pray that five virtues of the Kingdom might be poured out not just upon my five but upon all. Forgiveness. Humility. Thankfulness. Justice. Peace. Whenever they are lived and by whoever they are lived, they serve to bring the Kingdom of God closer.

Thy Kingdom Come! Alleluia!

Amen

Taken from our latest diocesan Grapevine. Visit the main page

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