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Sermons, essays, ideas.

Hi, I’m Alister. After twenty years in software development in London and Melbourne, and more than a decade leading a church in a pub in Melbourne, Australia, I became a Uniting Church Minister in 2019.

I’m interested in how you can reconstruct your faith if you’ve been bruised by your experience of church by taking the tradition more, not less, seriously. I also think about how do to church in post-modernity, having spent more than a decade leading a church in a pub. What does it mean to be a Christian in a world of suffering, doubt, and complexity?

What is Church For?

What is church for? In Australia hardly anyone goes, even when it’s livestreamed and there’s not much else to do. Is it important? And if so, why? What does Jesus’ interpretation of the law have to do with it? And what’s with the picture of the suspension bridge?

Suffering and Gratitude

As the lockdown drags on in Melbourne, gratitude just gets harder. Suffering becomes a kind of blindness as we are turned in on ourselves. But could suffering be an ironic teacher that knocks us out of our limited ways of seeing the world? Could gratitude be a way forward?

The Golden Calf

Moses had been gone, somewhere up on the mountain, for a long time. Too long. What had happened to him? Had he died up there? There were always wild animal sounds out in the darkness. Could a jackal or a lion have eaten him?

It’s a story from a long, long time ago. What possible relevance could the strange tale of a little cow cast from gold have to us today?

Freedom

What is freedom? Is it browsing down an eternal supermarket aisle searching for breakfast cereal? Or is it more like being a tree growing into full tree-ish-ness beside a river?

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