Sign in or register to download original


Reflection accompanying images “Singing a new song” and “Coventry cathedral inside out

Imagining the Lectionary: Singing a new song
(Second Sunday before Advent / Proper 28C / Ordinary 33C)

On the steps of Coventry Cathedral a busker sits down and begins to play his guitar. As he does so I wonder whether he is aware that he is occupying the self-same transitional social space as did Jesus, perched right on the boundary where inside and outside, Temple and City, meet. What better place to sing into the realities of both of these spaces, simultaneously calling each to account, and calling each to take account of the other. This is the space where, in the spirit of Psalm 98, new songs need to be birthed; here is where hope is to be proclaimed, suffering voiced and searing words of prophetic power let loose, all with great passion and unshakeable conviction.
This is the space where God the busker chooses to sit and sing a new song for the present age. God occupies this sacred space which is always uncomfortably just outside the ‘insidenesses' of power and patronage. We see this so clearly in Jesus, God's archetypal edge person, who looks at both the grandeur of the Temple and the might of the nations and sees ruination in prospect. This being true, Jesus points to the one constant amongst all this imminent, unsettling disruption and chaos that his followers can trust: his God disclosing words and his God revealing wisdom.
I will give you words and a wisdom that none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict.  (Luke 25:15)

Jesus channels all that God has pictured, proclaimed and promised through the poetry and prose of patriarchs, prophets, priests and people and brings it to bear right here, right now.  As he inhabits the interstices between Temple and City the text from Isaiah is made vividly present in the gritty realities of his flesh and blood life:


Log in to create a review