Holy is the Name I know

Good Friday, April 6, 2012 - Christ Church (Parish) Church - Fredericton, New Brunswick


The Reverend Anthony Kwaw, Rector of Fredericton

The Reverend Canon Jim Irvine, Guest Homilist


« We approach the Cross

« Forgive them

« You will be with me

« Behold

« Why?

« I thirst

« Finished!


Christ Church (Parish) Church, FrederictonThose that know me, know that I like to find myself in my kitchen among my Paderno pots and pans, my KitchenAid equipment and the stacks of cooking tips found in Everyday FOOD and the Food Network magazine.  I have an old house and an old kitchen.  Space is always a challenge and when I prepare a full course dinner I have shelves and ledges and counter tops dedicated to various dishes that are in process.  Of course the challenge is to have everything arrive at the dining table steaming hot and ready at the same time.  While I would starve as a chef – I need four to five days to strategize for a meal.  The menu is set, the ingredients are shopped for and set aside, and the recipes have been assembled in such a way that I know what I must do first.  The flow chart is critical.

Those that know me, know that I like to find myself with my Canon Digital Single Lens Reflex camera close by, along with my various lenses and my external dedicated flash unit.  Combined with my Manfrotto tripod, I enjoy taking photos of my culinary creations.  I have enjoyed developing photo essays on my various baking projects.  But my interest in photography has gone beyond the walls of my kitchen.  Roger Smith has been a great encouragement.  His introductory course on the U.N.B. Campus helped open up a world of memories – of my grandchildren, of visits across this country, of so many things I might have never imagined. 

And those that know me, know that most recently I like to prepare a canvass and prepare my pallet and set out my paints as I try to interpret what the lens has captured and apply it to a surface that will evoke a memory and a mood.  I have done three canvasses.  My first effort was the Citadel on the Bow River, caught is a light rain.  My second effort was the Towel of Babel on Lake Moraine, with the glacial melt a jade green in a summer sun.  My third effort was a couple in a Canoe on Lake Moraine, framed by coniferous boughs.

I have learned in each instance – in working on a special meal in my kitchen, in taking exposures that will catch the ambiance of light and darkness, in my efforts of selecting a brush and mixing the paints to apply to a bare canvass – that I am timid of finishing the task at hand.

Sometimes I find that once begun I am reluctant to finish.  I can always see something that is not complete, that could use improvement.  If it weren’t for the invitations having gone out and the arrival of table guests some meals might never have been completed.  If it weren’t for the failing sunlight and the closing time at King’s Landing I might never pack up my equipment and head for the car.  If it weren’t for the arrival of the gift-giving occasion I might never lay down a brush and say, Finished!

Whether or not his parched lips moved, whether or not his shallow breath was able to give voice to his thought, we have heard Finished! and known that the voice we heard was that of Jesus.  In the Garden of Gethsemane John has Jesus address his Father: I have glorified thee on earth by completing the work which thou hast given me to do. 

That which was undertaken has been accomplished.  Jesus proved to be faithful and obedient in the task.  Jesus had been intentional in his dealings with others.  Grace and truth touched the lives of men and women then; lives are touched still.  That which Jesus is heard as saying, Finished! is operative and effective  in our hearing.  The ministry of Jesus is continuingly Finished!  Between the Hosannas and the Alleluias it is finished.  In the darkness of the Mount lighted with the flushed Paschal Moon of Nissan it is Finished!  In the darkness of our lives, when we feel so inadequate and incomplete, whether the Moon is blood-red or the Month is Nissan, it is finished!

And the good news is this: while the world view that currently holds sway bids us worship in a Temple of Success, Jesus claims his accomplishment not on the Temple Mount but on Moriah.  Golgotha… Calvary… Moriah… the company Jesus keeps belies success.  It is Finished! he is heard as saying.  God is glorified.  As disciples we follow Jesus’ example and we are called to be faithful soldiers and servants to our life’s end.  Faithfulness and obedience are the hallmarks of this discipleship.  We lose sight of this to our peril.

The more the Body of Christ mirrors the business model of the world, the less we reflect the ministry of Jesus and the less we have to say to those that need so desperately to hear, Finished!

The emotion and excitement of Palm Sunday was mercuric. Hosannas were brilliant but fleeting and lacking endurance.   The Hosannas turned to Crucify him.  Alleluias beguile us to rush to Easter morning and race away from the darkness of the moment in which we find ourselves.  Finished! gives Alleluias a triumphal note, recognizing that the acclamation is a response to Jesus’ Finished!

Who can tell how many crosses…

still to come, or long ago…

Crucify the King of Heaven…

Holy is the Name I know.


« Into your hands


« Every Star Shall Sing a Carol



2012 Good Friday Liturgy - Power Point


Good Friday Series


Ashes to Easter


Highland Shepherd Resources