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My relationship with God

Written in response to an invitation in the #LiveLent 2018 app, where it said: “Make some time to write down the story of your relationship with God, how it began, how it has grown, what it means today”.

Can we have a relationship with God? What would, or could, be the nature of that relationship? Is anything like an equal balance and mutual respect possible? When I read the invitation in the Live Lent app, I was immediately enthusiastic to reflect on my own relationship with God, which has not always been easy, but still fills me with gratitude, awe and love.

Live Lent App available

  On it’s website, the Church of England provides a number of resources for Lent. Although we are already well in to Lent, the app provided might well be of interest to those who are seeking ways to make their way through this time of penitence. It comes recommended by at least one member of our congregation! The app, for Android and IOS, can be found on the following page. Scroll down to find the…

Longing for God

O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. — Ps 63:1

This is a translation of a text that I wrote earlier (February 2016) in Dutch, for the congregation of the Jeruzalemkerk.

A long time ago I heard in the time before Easter a sermon in which Psalm 63 was quoted. Particularly verse 3: Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. I considered this, and thought it was quite nonsensical. I thought: “What point is there in having a God when you are not alive?” And honestly, I still think that it is humanly impossible to believe in God’s love, when in this life we do not receive that which we need.

Our man in Oxford

This is an update from Thomas Fink-Jensen from Holy Trinity Utrecht, who is being supported in part by the chaplaincy with an annual grant, and primarily by the Church of England, as a postulant in training for ordained ministry. Dear Friends, I am writing you just before Hilary Term at the University of Oxford begins, and am (therefore?) still full of good cheer and happy memories of our visit to the Netherlands over Christmas. It…

Inspiration speaks to the heart

Words which emanate from the heart, enter the heart (Jewish saying) My fascination with words has led me to write ‘Words of Life’ and ‘Meaningful Words’. While I was writing those, I knew in my heart that a third needed to be written. For there are words that go beyond the surface of our understanding, and actually do something within our hearts. How does this work? How can words move us, touch our hearts, and…

Quiet day St Boniface, Saturday 17th February

A message from St Boniface Antwerp Just like previous years, St Boniface in Antwerpen has been able to organise an inspiring quiet day at the start of lent, 2018. The day, entitled “Slow Burn, Bright Flame, Evangelism the Carmelite Way, a lent journey with St Teresa of Avila” will be led by Bishop Norman Banks, Bishop of Richborough and Assistant bishop of the Diocese in Europe. It’s always good to welcome as many as possible to join…

Playgroup has started again

There will be no Playgroup on Friday 23rd February and 2nd March because of the School Holidays! From February onwards, Playgroup is back. Each Friday from  10:00 am to 11:30 am during school term. It takes place in the parsonage of Holy Trinity Anglican Church Utrecht, at Van Hogendorpstraat 26. All parents or carers with children aged 0-5 are welcome for indoor and outdoor play, singing and  story telling.

Hope for the New Year!

Excerpt from Joseph Pieper from Faith, Hope, Love trans. Sister Mary Francis McCarthy 1997 Ignatius Press, San Francisco (Chapter II pp. 110-111) …Natural hope blossoms with the strength of youth and withers when youth withers. “Youth is a cause of hope. For youth, the future is long and the past is short.” On the other hand, it is above all when life grows short that hope grows weary; the “not yet” is turned into the…

Confirmation Preparation begins 18 January!

Our next Confirmation will happen, God willing, in Holy Trinity Chaplaincy at 15.30 on Saturday 10th March AD 2018 at Heilig Kruiskerk, Liendertseweg 46, 3814 PL Amersfoort. Please contact the Chaplain if you or your son or daughter are interested in being prepared for Confirmation. In Confirmation Preparation we look through the Catechism in the Book of Common Prayer. Preparation for 2018 will happen on the following topics on the following days at 8pm (normally on Wednesdays but…

Touching the soul

Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?
— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

If there is one word that describes me well, it is ‘curiosity’. I always want to know how things work, in all details, especially what goes on behind the surface, how things are connected, what they really mean. And now my attention is captured by the concept of a soul. My own soul in particular, but also the whole idea of a soul, what is it, how does it work, what is the relation of my soul with my body? Can souls be connected (as in family, friendship, marriage, relation with God), does a soul have various parts, or is it just itself, an indivisible unity? Is the soul a space in which ideas live, or is it the source of the ideas? What is a wounded soul? One question bothers me especially: how can a soul influence a body and vice versa, when they are of such different nature?