• May 21, 2023 Sermon

    Easter 7 2023 Deacon Mary Ellen Gallagher
    Happy Assumption Day! This isn’t a day when
    we make assumptions about each other, but is
    noted as the day that Jesus was “assumed” ,
    meaning he physically rose into heaven after
    making resurrection appearances during the
    great 50 days of Easter.
    We don’t hear about people being assumed
    anymore. Charlie pointed out to me that there
    was a television series about folks being
    “raptured”, but that is different. In this show the
    people aren’t particularly holy, as the prophets
    of the Old Testament were holy. In this show it
    was a plot device, rather than a religious
    experience. Other than this show, there aren’t
    many TV shows or movies that have people
    suddenly being physically raised up into
    heaven, at least none that I remember.
    However, during biblical times, it was a way for
    the writers of the biblical stories to emphasize
    how holy someone was.
    The prophets Enoch, Elijah, and, by some
    accounts, Moses, were all suddenly raised
    physically into heaven.
    Even later in history, Mary, mother of Jesus,
    was assumed into heaven as well.
    And today we read about Jesus himself being
    Page 1
    In my imagination, It must have looked like
    something out of a science fiction show such
    as Star Trek from the 1960’s. Captain Kirk
    would radio the starship Enterprise when he
    wanted or needed to return to the ship and he
    would say, “beam me aboard, Mr. Scott” and
    suddenly Captain Kirk would start looking fuzzy
    as he as was being beamed aboard and then
    you would see him back on the Enterprise.
    We thought this was the coolest thing and
    many of us, myself included, thought this would
    be a great way to travel.
    However, assumption in the Bible stories seem
    to be less of a cool way to travel, than to be the
    answer to a problem of “where are the physical
    remains of the holy people” in Jewish history?
    Answer: They physically rose up into heaven.
    However interesting the idea of assumption is,
    there is something else, something more
    important that is going on.
    In fact it is revealed in the opening sentences of
    the service, in the Collect for the Day.
    The collect today says “O God, the king of
    glory, you have exalted your son Jesus Christ
    with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven;
    (that is the assumption part). Do not leave us
    comfortless, but send your Holy Spirit to
    strengthen us and exalt us to that place where
    our Savior Christ has gone before.
    Page 2
    This is a crucial piece.
    Now let’s take a look at today’s lessons and
    hear what they have to say on this subject.
    In the first lesson, the author of Acts of the
    Apostles gives us a glimpse into the apostles
    world between the resurrection and Pentecost.
    In the story we hear today the apostles ask the
    resurrected Jesus, “so Jesus, are you going to
    rescue Israel from the Roman occupation
    now?”They are still thinking in short-sighted
    political terms.
    The answer Jesus gives is a bad news/good
    news kind of answer. He says, “you know
    what? You don’t need to know everything God
    is doing. God has a special timeline. You will
    receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on
    you. And then you will speak for me wherever
    you go.That’s the bad news. The good news
    comes later.
    Continuing the story, suddenly, Jesus was lifted
    up to heaven and a cloud took him out of their
    sights. While they were gazing at this
    marvelous happening, suddenly standing
    beside the apostles were two men in white
    robes who asked the apostles “why are you just
    standing there looking up? The men in white tell
    them that “Jesus, has gone into heaven, and
    he’ll come back same way”.
    Page 3
    Not knowing what else to do, the apostles
    returned to Jerusalem from the Mount of
    Olives. This was a short journey, around 3/4 of
    a mile. When they entered the city they went to
    the room upstairs where they were staying. If
    you want to know the disciples names here
    they are: Peter, John, James, Andrew, Philip,
    Thomas, Bartholomew, Matthew, James,
    Simon, and Judas, son of James. There were
    some women there, too. Mary, Jesus’ mother
    was there as were his brothers.The reading
    says and they spent all their time praying.
    What do you think they were praying for? Think
    for a moment what you might be praying for
    under those circumstances. I think I would be
    praying for understanding of what had
    happened and for guidance on how to go
    forward. The Holy Spirit had been promised,
    but had not yet arrived to comfort them. This is
    really an in-between time for the believers.
    They had been promised that something was
    coming, but they didn’t know what it would be.
    They didn’t know that it would be the beginning
    of a great journey, one that would involve all of
    the disciples. They didn’t know what it would
    mean to receive comfort and power to spread
    the good news of Jesus when the Holy Spirit
    came upon them and that they would be Jesus’
    witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and
    Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
    It was the beginning of spreading the good
    news, the gospel, to the known world of their
    Page 4
    At this point in the story, since they didn’t know
    of the marvelous works they would be doing in
    Jesus’ name, if I were one of them, I would be
    bereft that Jesus had left them after being
    raised from the dead. And I would be skeptical
    about being comforted. In a short period of
    time, they have experienced a profound loss
    (the crucification), gain (Christ being raised from
    the dead on a Easter), and loss again. (Jesus
    being assumed into heaven). How could they
    believe that all would be well?
    Faith. They had faith in Jesus that, as Julien of
    Norwich put it, “all shall be well, and all shall be
    well, and all manner of things will be well”.
    They didn’t have to know the answers, they just
    had to know from their experiences with Jesus
    that it was true. They had to live in that faith.
    They would have to live in that faith to continue
    to preach the Good News of Jesus.
    It didn’t always go smoothly for the apostles,
    though. They were persecuted by non Christian
    rulers throughout the known world
    We read about this in the First Letter of Peter
    that we read today. This letter was written
    much later that Acts of the Apostles, and is
    written to persecuted Christians living in five
    regions of Asia Minor.
    Peter says, my dear friends, don’t be surprised
    Page 5
    at how difficult life can be as a follower of Jesus.
    Think of it as sharing your suffering with Jesus
    and then you can shout for joy when his glory is
    finally revealed. God’s spirit is resting on you,
    even when people make fun of you because
    you believe in Jesus. It’s not so bad to be
    humble now, because God will lift you up later.
    The letter goes on to say, “let God carry your
    burden of worry for you, because God really
    cares about you. Don’t let yourselves lose
    control. Pay attention to what you are doing
    and what’s going on around you. You could
    easily be caught up in something that is wrong,
    or could hurt you. Don’t do things that hurt
    people. Be steady in the faith you have. There
    are plenty of brothers and sisters throughout the
    world who know what you are going through
    and suffer for Jesus’ sake themselves. Your
    troubles won’t last forever. God’s grace will
    support you, strengthen you, and finally take
    you to be with God and Jesus.
    This is the comfort promised throughout the
    lessons. God is going to win.

  • May 14, 2023 Sermon

    Rev. Robin Finch

    Easter 6, Year A, 2023

    Acts 17:22-31; Paul in Athens said God does not lie in shrines made of human hands; Psalm 66:7-18; Bless our God, you peoples; make the voice of his praise be heard; 1 Peter 3:13-22; it is better to suffer for doing good than to suffer for doing evil; John 14:15-21; Jesus gives the promise of the Holy Spirit to the Disciples;

    Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in us the fire of your love. Send forth your spirit and we shall be created, and you shall renew the face of the earth. O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise, and ever enjoy your consolations. Amen.

    Jesus said, “I will not leave you orphaned.” By this time in Jesus’ ministry and His time with the Disciples, there may have been a sense of foreboding among them. He was trying to comfort them and assure them that He would come back. We know now He was speaking of His resurrection and His risen presence in their lives, and to assure them they would be spiritually alive. At that moment they were probably bewildered and numb with a sense of impending tragedy; but the day would come when their eyes would be opened, their minds would understand, and their hearts would be kindled – and then they would really see Him.

    “I will not leave you orphaned; I will leave you another Advocate, the Spirit of truth.” Jesus said that this Spirit would abide with them and live inside them. That is a wonderful promise Jesus made to His disciples, and a promise He makes to us. Jesus does not leave us to struggle alone. Our part is to invite the H.S. in, to make a space for the H.S. to dwell, and then wait in expectation and prayer.

    The H.S. is a comforter, who enables us to be brave, helps us to cope. And the H.S. guides us as to what to do and enables us to do it. How have you experienced the H.S. in your life? As a comforter, helper, advocate, counselor, one who has your back? Or maybe that still small voice, holy presence, spirit of truth, or holy light?

    For me the H.S is a comforter, a holy presence, and speaks in a still small voice. I have never experienced a burning bush as Moses did, a flash of blinding light as with Paul, or an audible voice as so many encounters are described in Scripture. Sometimes the H.S. speaks to us through other people. Sometimes we recognize them. Very early in my process of considering a call to ordination, someone asked me, when are you going to begin formation? He didn’t say, are you going to begin formation, but when are you going to begin formation. I replied that I hadn’t personally heard that call from the H.S. He said, then you are not listening. We all need friends like that!

    One challenge of living the spiritual life is that there are so many distractions in the world which may be obstacles to our receiving, knowing, and hearing the H.S. Perhaps we do not have idols made of gold, silver, or stone such as those found by Paul in Athens. But an idol of any kind stands in the place of God. An idol takes up valuable space in our hearts – space which truly belongs to God.

    Paul points out that the shrines and places made by humans do not and cannot take the place of God. Do we ever make God in our image, rather than the other way around? God is not made by us, God is the maker. Paul was perhaps concerned that the people of Athens, by worshipping idols, would be prevented from making a personal connection to the Living God. Paul probably set some of his listeners on a path to see more clearly their “unknown God” as the God of all.

    Paul also told them that God made humans to search for Him, and that He is not far from us. It is by God that we live and move and have our being. We are children of God. God, as the great Creator, wants to be in relationship with us. And that is kind of incredible because we were not created as perfect beings. And yet God loves us anyway; as they say, warts and all.

    This reminds me of a poem I read in a book about Mother Teresa of Calcutta. The title is “Anyway”, and the poem hangs on the wall of the children’s home in Calcutta. I assumed Mother Teresa wrote it. But one time I heard it read, and it was not attributed to her, so I looked it up. It was written by Kent M. Keith in 1968 and is called the Paradoxical Commandments. He later wrote a book, “Anyway: the Paradoxical Commandments: Finding Personal Meaning in a Crazy World.” It is amazing to me how appropriate this poem is today, 50+ years later.


    People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered,
    If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives,
    If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies,
    The good you do will be forgotten tomorrow,
    Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable,
    What you spent years building may be destroyed overnight,
    People really need help but may attack you if you help them,
    Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth,

    To close, these are the verses from Ephesians, which we normally hear at the end of Morning Prayer: “Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine: Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever.” Amen.

  • May 7, 2023 Sermon

    Anita Wallinger    

    Easter 5A

    May 7, 2023

    Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer,

    The readings for the 5th Sunday in Easter have a common thread for me. That thread is Trust.

    We hear in Psalm 31 the cry, into your hands I commend my spirit, Jesus said that on the cross. That trust of God’s protection, redemption, and love flows through the Psalm.

    The Epistle of 1 Peter is a passage about identity. Their new identity is as God’s people. They just must trust.

    The Gospel lesson, Jesus speaks of the disciples trusting he is preparing a place for them. Trust me, he says.

    St Stephen cries out in certainty and trust as he dies paraphrasing Psalm 31 by asking Jesus to receive his spirit.

    You note that I said “Trust and not believe. Trust has a different connotation. I recently read an article by Diane Butler Bass Christianity after Religion that many of the “believe “statements can be translated as “trust.”  Why trust instead of belief? Trust means the assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone/something: one in which confidence is placed: dependence on something future or contingent; hope. Belief means an acceptance that a statement is true, or something exists. I think that trust in this case has a stronger meaning and is more active than passive belief. If you say “I believe, someone will argue with you, but they are less likely to feel the need to argue if you say I trust.

    Hearing a biblical translation from another language or culture can bring new light and understanding of a passage. You hear it new and fresh. We used the First Nations Version of the New Testament as our advent Study. Part of today’s gospel is translated as” Do not let your hearts fall to the ground, he encouraged them. Trust in the Great Spirit, and trust in me. My Father’s lodge has room for everyone. If this were not so, then why would I tell you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When I am finished, I will come back to you so that you will always be with me.”  It continues with “Trust in me, for I am in the Father and he is in me. Or at least trust in the works my Father does through me. So, the passage is using trust instead of believe.

    Let’s look closer at the first lesson today in Acts. It is only six short verses. In these six short verses we see St Stephen filled with the Holy Spirit, gazing at the Glory of God and Jesus, forgiving those who stone him and then he dies. How powerful is that? What a great trust he shows in the promise of the Resurrection as he sends his spirit to Jesus. Trusting in Jesus even as he dies gives witness to others to do the same. He saw through that veil that separates us from God’s glory in resurrection. For unlike those we have heard of in recent reading being raised from the dead, St Stephen is looking at the Resurrected Jesus. Jairus’s daughter, the Widow of Nain son, and Lazarus are raised but not resurrected. St Stephen is looking through that veil to the Resurrected Jesus. His trust is so powerful and gives such a witness to the promise of the Resurrection.

    Where do you see this trust in your life?

    As many of you know I have been visiting Donna Ellway for many years. She had a stroke when she was thirty-five. Strokes often hinder communication at times. We will be praying or talking and usually I can figure out what she wants to say. Many times, there is no interruption in communication. But sometimes it is difficult. We just wait and often the words come back. Sometimes they don’t. This is when we both just shrug our shoulders and we trust that God understands the prayers, for he doesn’t need words. (Donna gave me permission to share this.)

     Do You Trust in the Resurrection?

    How do I see the Resurrection in my life?

    My Dad died 50 years ago, but I still remember what got me through the grief. It was my trust in the Resurrection and that my dad trusted in God. Grief for me was very deep and vast but not without hope. So, the resurrection was that which was longed for and promised. If I hadn’t had that trust, then as an 18-year-old daddy’s girl I don’t think I could have withstood the all-encompassing grief I felt. How do we experience the trust in the Resurrection? It’s this trust that you all have when you meet the grief of losing your loved ones. We all have lost someone near and dear, parents, grandparents, siblings, spouses, and children. But by putting our trust in the resurrection we survive the grief and turn it to hope and assurance.

    So here we are, people of the Resurrection in Easter season. We celebrate the life of those who died like we did last week celebrating Bob Andrews-Bryant. We remember them in the community of saints (little s). Most importantly we don’t live our lives in fear of Hell but in the promise of Resurrection. We trust in the Resurrection, we trust in Jesus, we trust in God.

    For we are the people of the Resurrection. Amen Alleluia.

  • April 30, 2023 Sermon

    The Rev. Joseph Farnes  

    All Saints, Boise

    Easter 4A

    April 30, 2023


              “Those who had been baptized devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” The Baptismal Covenant that is so central to Episcopal identity is something that has been part of Christianity from the beginning, even if it hasn’t been talked about that way.

              Baptism is the rite of incorporation into the Body of Christ, and when we are baptized, we are called to live a newness of life that transforms the world.

              To help us understand what is happening in our baptism, let’s talk about what the Spirit is doing in baptism: first, we are called out of the world; second, we are sent into the world; and third, we are brought into the Kingdom of God.

              First, we are called out of the world. The first part of baptism is what we call the renunciation: we renounce those things that pull us away from the love of God and neighbor, we give up those things that tie us down. We renounce the messed-up ways that we see in the world, we renounce the messed-up ways that have become part of us, and we renounce the messed-up ways we see in the spiritual realm.

              We renounce the messed-up ways of the world because we see how systems can get so messed up that alternatives seem impossible. We renounce the messed-up ways that have become part of us because we know that we’ve all inherited ways of thinking and being that maybe we’ve never questioned, yet they’re pulling us away from God. We renounce the messed-up spiritual ways we see in the spiritual realm because we see what happens when spirituality goes bad, turns poisonous, turns hateful and demonic. So we are called out of these ways, called to turn away from them and turn toward Jesus.

              But the second movement of baptism sends us the opposite way. We are sent into the world. We aren’t called away from the world to prove we’re better than the rest of the world, and we aren’t called away from the world in order to sit in judgment of the world. No, in our baptism we’ll be sent back into the world in order to be an agent of healing, a sign of hope, a herald of God.

              We are sent back out into the world to share the love of God in thought, word, and deed. In thought, in word, and in deed. All of those. The world needs us to share the love of God in our thinking, in our speaking, and in our doing. All three. The world needs new ways of thinking – ways that think of new possibilities. The world needs new ways of speaking – the truth spoken in love instead of lies spoken for gain. The world needs new ways of doing – action instead of inaction, contemplation instead of simmering resentment.

              And the third movement of baptism: we are brought into the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is both our future hope and our present joy. We see glimpses of the Kingdom of God in our midst – in our community, where people of different backgrounds come together to pray and to praise God and to do works of compassion, where people come together to love one another and to be loved when they mess up. We trust in the Kingdom of God because we are walking our way to the Kingdom because it’s not here yet. There’s stuff that still needs to be changed, to be renewed, to be healed. But we know God will make it all right, and so we rejoice that the little things we do are part of that effort. The Kingdom of God is here now, and the Kingdom of God is coming soon.

              But even the phrase “Kingdom of God” isn’t enough. Kingdom makes it sound like it’s a place, and it’s more than that. We’re brought into the Body of Christ – our hands are Christ’s hands to do his work, our mouths are Christ’s mouths to speak his words – do we take our place in the Body of Christ, and do we take it seriously?

              And we’re brought into the Communion of Saints – the massive fellowship of so many who have gone before and so many who are still with us. Countless number, countless faces and lives, some that we know, and some that we do not know. All of them – we’re brought into an immense family of faith that welcomes us and celebrates the work of Christ in our lives. The saints have shared with us the teaching of the apostles, and we share in their fellowship in the breaking of the bread and the prayers.

              You are called out of the world. You are sent into the world. You are brought into the Kingdom of God, the Body of Christ, the Communion of the Saints.  Thanks be to God for the gift of baptism! Amen, alleluia!


    To read Julian of Norwich is to dive into the depths of divine love. Her theology is timeless. It is one woman’s lifetime of prayerful listening and attentive devotion to God. Her theology is not about God. Her theology is communion with God and her fellow Christians. 

    All Shall Be Well 

    “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.” (Chapter 27)

    This famous line from Julian’s Revelations of Divine Love speaks a healing word to us in the midst of upheaval, conflict, and injustice. Fourteenth-century England was not a safe, secure place. Political and social conflict simmered and boiled, and diseases like the plague and deprivation were always lurking at the door. (1) Julian was an anchoress (someone who was walled-in next to the parish church to pray and offer counsel) yet was deeply connected to the suffering of the world. Her theology is not naïve optimism but faith-filled hope grounded in God.

    Julian had a mystical experience at age 30 that became her life’s work. In her youth, she asked God for three gifts: a deeper understanding of Christ’s passion; a bodily sickness that would draw her to death’s door; and three wounds (“the wound of true contrition, the wound of kind compassion, and the wound of wish-filled yearning for God”). (2) On May 8th, 1373 she was plunged into a powerful sickness and had a series of mystical visions that she would turn over in her heart for years to come.  Shortly after her experience, Julian wrote the first version of her Revelations (called the Short Text), and over the years she meditated on the meaning of these showings and wrote an expanded version (the Long Text). (3)

    The Lord’s Meaning: Love 

    What did God show Julian? What was God’s meaning? Love. Years after her mystical visions, Julian kept praying to know God’s meaning, and she was answered:

    I was answered in spiritual understanding, saying thus: ‘Wouldst thou know thy Lord’s meaning in this thing? Be well aware: love was His meaning. Who showed it thee? Love. What showed He thee? Love. Why did He show it thee? For love.

    Love is God’s meaning. Ages before Presiding Bishop Michael Curry said, “If it’s not about love, it’s not about God,” Julian was writing that Love is our creation, our foundation, our eternity. 

    Julian’s prayer for three wounds (true contrition, kind compassion, and yearning for God) offer a glimpse into the theology underlying the Revelations of Divine Love

    The First Wound: True Contrition

    In Chapter 52 of the Long Text, Julian lays out a familiar scene: in a moment of spiritual uplift and closeness, we would do gladly what God asks of us, but as soon as that feeling departs, we sink back into old habits. We have the best of intentions but inevitably fail. What are we to do?

    The insight Julian gives is practical and grounded in God:

    Neither on the one hand fall overly low, inclining to despair, nor on the other hand be over reckless as if we gave no heed, but humbly acknowledging our weakness, aware that we cannot stand even a twinkling of an eye except by the protection of grace, and reverently cleaving to God, trusting in Him alone. (5)

    Contrition, for Julian, involves a gentle self-accusation that brings our awareness to our sins and leads us to trust that God loves us deeply and everlastingly. 

    This love is rooted firmly in the cross. Julian’s visions include Christ’s passion with gory details about the quantity and thickness of his blood, the drying of his flesh, and his agony, but Julian also sees Christ dying for us out of joyful, loving solidarity. (6) Christ eagerly chooses the cross out of love. This is not heroic self-sacrifice but motherly love. Julian writes: 

    Our true Mother Jesus, He – all love – gives us birth to joy and to endless life. … Thus He carries us within Himself in love, and labors until full term so that He could suffer the sharpest throes and the hardest birth pains that ever were or ever shall be, and die at the last. And when He had finished, and so given us birth to bliss, not even all this could satisfy His wondrous love. (7)

    In this genderfluid depiction of Christ, we see that the cross is creative love. Our heavenly Mother Christ gives us birth, watches us grow and try new things, stumble and fall, letting us mature as beloved children. 

    The Second Wound: Kind Compassion

    The intimacy of Julian’s theology includes the individual but expands outwards into the cosmos. In Chapter 37 of the Long Text, she writes: “What can make me love my fellow Christians more than to see in God that He loves all that shall be saved as if they were all one soul?” We are each beloved as individuals and in community, in communion; therefore, we ought also to love one another. Love of God and love of neighbor are entwined. 

    Julian writes, “Then I saw that each kind compassion that man has toward his fellow Christian with love, it is Christ in him.” (8) The love of God, the love that is God is shown to one another. God beholds our suffering and burns with compassion, and it is this very same compassion that animates our love for one another. 

    Julian asks a question we all wonder about salvation: how can God be both just (holding people accountable for their injustices) and also merciful (as befits God who is love)? (9) God answers Julian with a response that is reminiscent of God’s unsatisfying response to Job: God says that there will be a Great Deed that will set all things right but refuses any details other than it will be “honorable and marvelous and fruitful.” (10) Like Julian, we are left curious as to what this Great Deed will be, but God has the desire and the design to make everything right. This Great Deed remains a mystery, but it undergirds our hope that all things shall be well indeed. 

    Our response is to trust in God’s love for us and for all. Julian’s theology holds in tension what she knows from Church teaching about justice and these revelations of love. (11) God will bring both justice and love to fulfillment; will we join in the work? 

    The Third Wound: Longing for God

    In another vision Julian sees a hazelnut in the palm of her hand and hears, “It is all that is made.” (12) Creation is small, almost nothing, yet God loves it endlessly. God made it, God loves it, and God keeps it. Julian wonders about its significance, and she proclaims:

    …until I am in essence one-ed to Him, I can never have full rest nor true joy (that is to say, until I am made so fast to Him that there is absolutely nothing that is created separating my God and myself). (13)

    Beloved creatures are made to rest and rejoice in God, and we will never reach complete satisfaction until we are one with God. We are called to be aware of our smallness and to “set at naught everything that is created, in order to love and have God who is uncreated.” (14) Our souls cannot be satisfied with anything less than God, and God is delighted and honored to satisfy this need. Inspired by the Spirit and guided by her understanding, Julian gives this prayerful summary of the soul’s true desire: 

    God, of your goodness give me yourself; for you are enough to me, and I can ask nothing that is less that can be full honor to you. And if I ask anything that is less, I shall always be in want, for only in you have I all. (15)

    God wants us to desire God with our whole selves, and desiring God gives us everything. Julian’s desire for God led her to contemplate these showings her entire life and led her to share these revelations with us that we may know, love, and yearn for God in our own way, too. 

    As God says to Julian: 

    It is I – that is to say

    It is I: the Power and the Goodness of the Fatherhood. 

    It is I: the Wisdom of the Motherhood.

    It is I: the Light and the Grace that is all blessed Love. 

    It is I: the Trinity.

    It is I: the Unity. 

    I am the supreme goodness of all manner of things. 

    I am what causes thee to love. 

    I am what causes thee to yearn. 

    It is I: the endless fulfilling of all true desires. (16)


    There is much, much more that can be said about Julian’s theology. Her parable of the Lord and the Servant, her intricate and mystical doctrine of the Trinity, and her own struggles with the revelations further show the profound yet accessible depths of her theology; nevertheless, the goal of theology is not to get us to shape our thinking about God but to bring us to communion with God and others. 

    May we rejoice in God just as God rejoices in us, and may we hold fast to the Lord’s meaning: love.

    1. Veronica Mary Rolf, Julian’s Gospel: Illuminating the Life and Revelations of Julian of Norwich. 15
    2. Julian of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love, ch 2. (While Julian of Norwich wrote in Middle English, this essay will generally quote from John-Julian’s translation)
    3. Denys Turner, Julian of Norwich, Theologian. 9
    4. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 86.
    5. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 52.
    6. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 21.
    7. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 60.
    8. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 28.
    9. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 35, 36.
    10. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 36.
    11. Veronica Mary Rolf, Julian’s Gospel, 410.
    12. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 5.
    13. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 5.
    14. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 5.
    15. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 5. This version comes from the liturgy of the Order of Julian of Norwich.
    16. Revelations of Divine Love, ch 59.