You are here21st February 2016

21st February 2016

By Ian Cardinal - Posted on 21 February 2016

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

On the second Sunday of Lent, we move from Jesus' retreat to the desert and temptation by the devil to the glory shown in Jesus' Transfiguration. On the first Sunday of Lent, our Gospel always tells the story of Jesus' temptation in the desert. On the second Sunday, we always hear the story of Jesus' Transfiguration.

The Transfiguration occurs on a mountain in the presence of just three of Jesus' disciples—Peter, James and John. These are among the first disciples that Jesus called in Luke's Gospel. We recently heard this Gospel at Mass, on the fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Only Luke's Gospel, which often describes Jesus at prayer, indicates that Jesus is praying as his appearance changes to bright white. Luke indicates that the three disciples were sleeping while Jesus prayed. They will be sleeping again as Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane before his Passion and death. As they awake, Peter and the disciples see Jesus Transfigured and Elijah and Moses present with Jesus. Elijah and Moses, both significant figures in the history of Israel, represent Jesus' continuity with the Law and the Prophets. In Matthew's and Mark's Gospels, there is reference to conversation among Jesus, Elijah, and Moses, but only Luke's Gospel explains that this conversation is about Jesus' later accomplishments in Jerusalem. Luke describes this as his exodus, connecting Jesus' Passion, death, and Resurrection with the Israel's Exodus from Egypt. On witnessing Jesus' Transfiguration and seeing Jesus with Elijah and Moses, Peter offers to construct three tents for them. Having just awoken, perhaps Peter's offer was made in confusion. We also notice that Peter reverted from his earlier confession that Jesus is the Messiah, calling Jesus “master” instead. As if in reply to Peter's confusion, a voice from heaven speaks, affirming Jesus as God's Son and commanding that the disciples listen to him. This voice from heaven recalls the voice that was heard at Jesus' baptism which, in Luke's Gospel, spoke directly to Jesus as God's Son. In his Transfiguration, we see an anticipation of the glory of Jesus' Resurrection. In each of the reports of the Transfiguration, the disciples keep secret what they have seen. Not until they also witness his Passion and death will the disciples understand Jesus' Transfiguration. We hear this story of Jesus' Transfiguration early in Lent, but we have the benefit of hindsight. In our hearing of it, we anticipate Jesus' Resurrection even as we prepare to remember Jesus' Passion and death.

Nichola Abbott


Hymns for today

Aston Stone
128 128
53 249
261 305
325/159 287/452
304 396



Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Ron Burton, Mary Townsend, Ron Osborne, Doreen Knight, Rod Tobias, Noelle Emery, Andrew Kelsall, Terry Clarke, Peter and Dianne Harvey, Elsie Richardson, Glenn Ashall, Barbara Thornicroft, Roy & Barbara Ball, Martin Cardinal, Baby Tanya Hancock, Vera Tomkinson, Crystal Jenkins, Neil Wynne, Gary Kelsall, Julia Johnson, Rosemary Tranter, Jocelyn James, Emily Franks


And for the departed:

Harry Townsend and Patricia Lamb

Remembering their families and friends at this time


This week:

Tuesday 23rd 11.45 am – 1 pm DROP IN CAFÉ – St Michael’s Hall

Wednesday 24th 7.30 pm Holy Communion with Lent Address & discussion

Thursday 25th 10.30 am Holy Communion – St M&W


LENT 2016 Our Lent Course continues this week on Christian basics. We meet at Aston St Saviour at 7.30 pm on Wednesday to hear Fr John Cotterill speak about Baptism and Confirmation. Do come and join in.


ST SAVIOUR’S CLEANING AND COFFEE ROTAS: None of us want to sit in a dirty church, and part of the quality of our welcome in Christ is being there at the end of worship with a hot drink and a smile: but both need volunteers urgently! Can you help? Please see Christine Burton


EASTER LILLIES If you would like to donate a lily in memory of a loved one, there is a list available at the back of both churches to sign. Monies can be paid to the Church Wardens. For further information please speak to Christine Burton at St Saviours or Helen Smith at St Michaels.


MESSY CHURCH PLANNING The next planning session is on Monday 29th February at 7.30pm in St Michaels Hall. Everyone welcome.