Working Together For The Glory of God
Sunday 27th January 2013The Archbishop's sermon in The Sun today talks about working together for the glory of God, Archie B and the importance of apprenticeships! His sermon follows in full....
How did your team do this weekend?
Did the defence let you down? Could the strikers just not hit the target? Were the midfielders failing to make an impact, did the goalkeeper just make some really bad decisions? Or did they all play together brilliantly, keeping their formation, each person knowing where the others were, passing with skill and generosity, creating chances for themselves and others, delighting their fans?
Our bible reading in Church today is a letter from St Paul’s to the church in Corinth, in which he is trying to encourage church-members to work together for the glory of God. Everyone has different gifts and talents, Paul tells them. Each one of you is a body-part of the whole. Don’t all think you have to be the one who leads the prayers, or the one who preaches, the one who does the flowers, or the one who plays the music. He reminds them that our bodies are a marvellous piece of collaborative and co-ordinated working. We may think our eyes are our best feature. But if we decided we just wanted to be all eye, we wouldn’t be able to hear or speak. Similarly, though our football teams need to score goals to win games, if all our players were strikers, where would the defence be!
At the end of this week of prayer for Christian Unity, we need to remember that God has given us all wonderful gifts, but he’s given them to us not just for our own pleasure, and certainly not for our personal pride, but so that we can work together to do more wonderful things than we can do alone. Saint Teresa of Avila’s poem describes the miracle of how the world is changed by each one of us using our gifts and bringing them together to serve others.
"Christ has no body now but yours; no hands, no feet on earth but yours
Yours are the eyes through which he looks with compassion on this world;
Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good;
Yours are the hands with which He blesses all the world;
…you are His body"
May we all work together in love, to make our world a happier and more glorious place.
Last week a new character appeared here at Bishopthorpe. ‘Archie Bishop’! That name sounds familiar! But it isn’t me. Archie is the central character in a programme going out in Primary Schools as my Youth Trust is extending their Young Leaders Award to include Primary School pupils. On Tuesday children from Osbaldwick Primary school visited Bishopthorpe Palace and met ‘Archie Bishop’ for the first time. Archie has an inspiring story to tell. His life is similar to many of the young people that my Youth Trust is involved in supporting through our grant-making programme.
Through this work Archie’s life was turned around for the better and now he wants to encourage children everywhere to join him in serving others and making a difference in our society. We can all be a part of making this great country of ours a better place!
We all have a part to play in our communities, whether we are young or old, and if we remember to work together then we can be the change we want to see. To find out more visit www.archiebishop.com or follow Archie on Twitter @archiebishopyla
Importance of Apprenticeships
I spent two days last week in the Diocese of Carlisle and had a wonderful time visiting a number of different projects and initiatives.
One particularly inspiring scheme is run by The Lake District National Park who started taking apprentices about a year ago. Fourteen young people are now working on 18-month placements, some in the National Park, and learning countryside management skills; others in the accountancy department, or learning retail and other skills. All are paid above the minimum wage, and they hope to provide jobs for at least three of the apprentices at the end of their term
The apprentices are thrilled with the programme and delighted to be able to develop skills to help them find jobs in the future. As one of them said to me, “It’s challenging, builds my confidence and it’s helping me to see things with new eyes”.
The young people in our cities, towns and villages have so many gifts and skills which can benefit our communities, and so it is vital that youth unemployment, which is such a source of grief and loss, is addressed creatively. That is why I was so glad to see the development of these apprenticeships. May many more employers consider taking on apprentices so that all in our society may flourish and grow.