St Hilda's Anglican Catholic Church Service Times

You are invited to join us for Anglican Catholic Holy Communion / Mass on:
Every Sunday, Maitland NSW Australia. Venue: St Marys School Chapel in Victoria St. Mass at 11am.
Fr Matthew Kirby for further details.
Check here for any additions or cancelations of services.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Sermon Summary for Trinity 24 - Theological Virtues

"Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timotheus our brother, To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel";  Colossians 1:1-5 (KJV)

"the hope which is laid up for you in heaven" +

Familiar trio at the beginning of the Epistle: Faith, Hope and Love. 

Compare "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." 1 Corinthians 13:13.
Other places in the New Testament too (e.g) "But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation." 1 Thessalonians 5:8. 

Called the "Theological Virtues". Each in its fullness implies the other.

Faith believes God's promises, including of eternal reward, hence brings hope. It also trusts God's love (we have "believed the love", 1 John 4:16) and so is itself loving in return "
We love him, because he first loved us." 1 John 4:19.

Hope trusts God will be faithful in his loving salvation, hence faith and love.

Love "believes all things, hopes all things" (
1 Corinthians 13:7).

It's easy to see the essential nature of love. God is love (1 John.) and love is the fulfilling of the moral law "
For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself". Galatians 5:14)

Faith's centrality is also apparent, as it is the pathway to God. We cannot search for or obey him if we do not believe he exists and is righteous "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him". Hebrews. 11:6. Unless we trust his love, we will not respond in love.

But what's so important about hope? It gives us courage to endure. And endurance is essential for any other virtue to bear fruit "
that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand". Ephesians 6:13b In the midst of trials, we need to know that suffering and wickedness will not have the final say. Hope purifies our motivations and desires by tearing them away from the temporary and finite and attaching them to the infinite and eternal "And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure".1 John. 3:3. It's very easy when life is relatively comfortable to be satisfied with earthly blessings and forget where ultimate happiness lies. So, hope is needed at every step.

For what do we hope? Justice against sin, mercy towards penitent sinners, including ourselves. Resurrection, healing, the vision of God, beauty, inexpressible joy Link: (Revelations. 20-22). 

"[I]t does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And every one who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure"(1 John. 3:2-3). +

Image titled "The Three Theological Virtues" by Augustin-Jean Moreau-Vauthier (1831–1893)
Shown in a Gothic architectural setting are statues of the personifications of the three theological Virtues: Charity (Love), leading a child and carrying an infant; Faith, holding a cross and chalice; and Hope, with her anchor. 

You are welcome to join us at the Anglican Catholic Church "St Hilda's Parish in Maitland next Sunday for Mass /  Holy Communion at 11am. We are in the Chapel of St Marys Campus of The All Saints College in Victoria Street Maitland NSW Australia

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