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Latest

Here you will find the latest updates about our life at Bloomsbury - from sermons to community updates.
Please take a look around and get to know us a bit.
We would love to welcome you in person if you would like to visit us.

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Theology Live! 2020

Date:
24th Jan 2020

Papers from Theology Live! Held at Bloomsbury 23 January 2020. Read more

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Latest Bloomsbury News now available

Date:
24th Jan 2020

The February issue of our in-house magazine, Bloomsbury News, is now available. Read more

Church growth, naturally.

Date:
19th Jan 2020

“Growth will take place most effectively when we play our part in preparation and in the removal of the obstacles to growth, whilst allowing God to play his part in bringing growth, health, fruit, and harvest.” Read more

On Forgiveness and Healing

Date:
10th Jan 2020

"Simply telling individuals that they must repent of their personal sins to be acceptable to God and God’s people is a distortion of the forgiveness that should be shaping us together into communities of love, restoration, transformation and wholeness." - Simon Woodman Read more

Towards Full Inclusion in Church Life

Date:
9th Jan 2020

The starting point for a journey into greater inclusion isn’t a greater understanding of the marginalised and the oppressed, it is a greater understanding of ourselves and our own capacity for sinful idolatry. Read more

By Whose Authority?

Date:
5th Jan 2020

"Spiritual warfare is not so much a battle between Good and Evil, as it is a battle against the human tendency to take God’s good creation and mess it up. The casting out of the demonic is the restoration of a person to normality." - Simon Woodman Read more

A Missing Nativity

Date:
30th Dec 2019

"The wild beasts and angels in the wilderness with Jesus and Satan give us an insight into the nature of Jesus’ ministry as it will unfold over the coming years, as an apocalyptic battle between good and evil, with him coming to the world to cast out evil, and to bring release from those powers that oppress and distort humanity." - Simon Woodman preaching at Bloomsbury, 29 December 2019. Read more

From Priesthood to Prophecy

Date:
22nd Dec 2019

The move from priesthood to prophecy is the move from ritual to action. Faith will no longer be based upon the remembrance of what God has done in times gone by, but upon what God is doing by his grace in the present. Read more

Carols from Bloomsbury

Date:
13th Dec 2019

Sing along with some of your favourite carols, performed by the congregation at the Bloomsbury Carol Celebration 2019, accompanied by Philip Luke playing the 'Bloomsbury Beast' pipe organ. Read more

Bypassing Herod

Date:
13th Dec 2019

At our Carol Celebration on Friday (the day the election result was announced) Simon gave a short sermon on Herod. Read more

The World Turned Upside Down

Date:
10th Dec 2019

"The comfort proclaimed by Isaiah to the exiles in Babylon was no shallow Pollyanna-ish message of hope. Rather, it was a comfort based on the faithfulness of God. Because even if God’s people are unfaithful to God, God remains Faithful to them." - Simon Woodman. Read more

A Right Jeremiah!

Date:
2nd Dec 2019

Within the Christian story, the hope of Jeremiah is fulfilled in Jesus, who embodies God’s righteousness and justice, bringing hope to all those whose lives are lost in despair. Read more

Baptists and Social Change

Date:
29th Nov 2019

Bloomsbury hosted the London Citizens Delegates Assembly in November 2019. Over 500 community leaders from civic institutions across the capital gathered to show how our power to bring about change for justice is magnified when we work together. Read more

Bloomsbury and the First World War - NEW BOOK

Date:
27th Nov 2019

"Linking Hands with the Front" is an account of Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church in 1914 - 1918. Based on the church's magazines from the period, it tells the story of the "Bloomsbury Batallion's" service overseas and on the home front. Many of the issues it raises are pertinent to today. It is researched and written by Jonathan Barr and Janice O'Brien. Read more

A tale of two cities: from New York to the new Jerusalem

Date:
24th Nov 2019

"John invites his readers to see themselves as citizens of the new Jerusalem, as citizens of the dawning kingdom of God.He invites them to become participants with Christ in bringing this new city into being. New Jerusalem only becomes a reality when we live it into being, one day, one choice at a time." Read more

The Precious Pearl

Date:
17th Nov 2019

"The emphasis in Jesus’ parable is not on the pearl itself, it is on the act of seeking. The metaphor for the Kingdom here is not an object, but an action. The kingdom here is experienced through seeking, and finding, and sacrificing, and acting decisively." Read more

Heaven's Perspective on Martyrdom

Date:
10th Nov 2019

"John uses the metaphor of the millennium to provide his audience with the perspective they need to understand the relationship between martyrdom and victory in Christ. Death is not the end, death is not defeat, the martyrs are not lost to God, they reign with Christ. And every unjust death of martyr and victim is another nail in the eternal coffin of the beast." Simon Woodman preaching for Remembrance Sunday at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church. Read more

Inclusive Church Series: Trans Inclusion

Date:
3rd Nov 2019

"While questions of justice remain unanswered, God will challenge us to reflect on social and ecclesiastical structures that fall short of the insight that we all, without exception, bear God's image."  The Revd Dr Karl Rutlidge, preaching at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church on 3rd November 2019. Read more

The End of Discrimination

Date:
27th Oct 2019

"I have had challenges reconciling my Christian faith with my sexuality, and many people have believed that it was not possible for me to be a citizen of heaven because of my sexuality, and indeed the colour of my skin... But I just stick with Christ! "We have to stand for justice, for the value and importance of all people. Let us be the generation that brings about the end of discrimination of all kinds." - Revd Jide Macauley, preaching at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 27 October 2019 Read more

The bottom-trawling-fishing-net kingdom

Date:
20th Oct 2019

The Kingdom of Heaven is not a narrative of victimhood leading to policies of exclusion. It’s not a story of us-and-them. It’s not a story of us being good, and them being evil. Rather, it is a story of inclusion, of radical and disruptive intervention in the global ecosystems of violence. The Kingdom of Heaven is not the few faithful fish caught in someone else’s nasty net; it is the net itself, trawling the world and gathering everything in its path. Read more

Mental Health Inclusion and the 'Unforgivable Sin'

Date:
13th Oct 2019

"What is real madness? Perhaps it is when we declare that someone filled with the Spirit of God is fundamentally bad, mad, or disordered. Perhaps this is the unforgivable sin, and perhaps we commit it every time someone vulnerable or wounded is declared disordered." Read more

God of the poor

Date:
6th Oct 2019

"It is in amplifying and advocating for the voiceless in our community that our part in being transformational good news for the poor really lies." - Lynne Cullens, preaching at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church as part of our series on 'Inclusive Church' Read more

Serving one another

Date:
29th Sep 2019

"We are called to be good stewards of the grace of God. The gifts we have been given are to be given out.... again and again... be they physical, emotional or spiritual." - Luke Dowding Read more

Living Differently and Following Faithfully

Date:
22nd Sep 2019

"Do we have the bravery and humility to be followers as well as to lead? Where is God calling us to next?" - Dawn Cole-Savidge Read more

Making Disciples?

Date:
15th Sep 2019

"To reduce Christ's life, teaching, death, and resurrection to the 'Great Commission', is to dismiss what the gospels are trying to teach us about how to be and make disciples." - Revd Dawn Cole-Savidge, preaching at Bloomsbury on 15th September 2019 Read more

Gender inclusion

Date:
10th Sep 2019

'Redemption is not about going back to before the fallen world began, it is about realising that we are invited to share in the re-patterning of our world...' Read more

Apocalypse Now #8: Heaven's Perspective on Economics

Date:
1st Sep 2019

"The Book of Revelation gives us an image of empire as a self-destructive entity, that brings upon itself the fitting judgement for its idolatrous activities. How can we hear this warning for the empires of our time?" - Simon Woodman. Read more

Pursuing What is Right

Date:
28th Aug 2019

"On occasions, churches have been tempted to pursue what is safe rather than what is right..." Read more

Decluttering our Spiritual Life

Date:
18th Aug 2019

"What do we need to let go to obtain the joy of the kingdom of heaven? What are we carrying that saps the joy of life?" Read more

Apocalypse Now #7: Heaven's Perspective on the Environment

Date:
11th Aug 2019

'The environmental devastation in the Book of Revelation is not personally targeted punishment aimed at those who have denied the lordship of Christ, neither is it God punishing the earth for its opposition to the kingdom of Christ. Rather, it is a warning to the nations of the effects of their ongoing investment in empire, in the hope that the nations of the earth will ‘repent’ and turn from their exploitative and destructive practices.' - Simon Woodman Read more

Inclusion and disability

Date:
4th Aug 2019

"We must include everybody, there is no opt out clause... because we are being shaped into the likeness of Christ's body" - Revd Glen Graham, preaching at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church on Inclusion and Disability, 4 August 2019 Read more

Apocalypse Now #6: Heaven's perspective on mercy and judgement

Date:
30th Jul 2019

"The blood that flows from the wine-press represents the very real and bloody human consequences of humanity’s infatuation with the beast. This isn’t a picture of God doing violence to humans, it’s a picture of God’s judgement on the violence humans do to one another." - Simon Woodman Read more

The Kingdom of Heaven is Like a Virus

Date:
21st Jul 2019

"The kingdom of heaven is like a virus, which spreads throughout the body and against which even antivirals don’t work." - Simon Woodman preaching at the Bloomsbury Church Anniversary Service Read more

Apocalypse Now #5: Heaven’s Perspective on History

Date:
14th Jul 2019

'I don’t want to call into question the historicity of Raiders of the Lost Ark, but the Book of Revelation offers a slightly different take on the ark’s location.' - Simon Woodman Read more

Pride Sunday 2019

Date:
7th Jul 2019

Four stories of LGBTQ inclusion at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, from Dawn, Luke, Martyn and Udoka. Read more

The God who gives cake

Date:
30th Jun 2019

"This is a story about God, about cake, about giving up, about being, about running away, about running out of ourselves, and about listening..." - Andy Fitchet Read more

God is not angry

Date:
23rd Jun 2019

"You don't have to be afraid, because God is not angry" - Dawn Cole-Savidge. What is your heart filled with? Read more

Happy Birthday to Richard

Date:
19th Jun 2019

It was Richard Bowers' 50th birthday celebrations at Bloomsbury this weekend - he has been part of the church for his whole life and is a valued and loved member of the congregation. Read more

The parable of the mustard seed

Date:
19th Jun 2019

The kingdom of heaven is like a strand of DNA, so tiny only electron microscopes can see it; but it gives shape to all the glories of nature from the eye to the brain, from the rose to the mighty oak. Read more

Pentecost and the Ethic of the Spirit

Date:
10th Jun 2019

"We have exchanged the ethic of the Spirit for laws set in stone, and in so doing have missed the fact that God has long gone on ahead of us, out there into the world beyond us, drawing all kinds of people to himself, and pouring out his Spirit again and again on all flesh." - Simon Woodman preaching at #BloomsburyBaptist Read more

Ethnic Inclusion

Date:
7th Jun 2019

As part of our series exploring what it means for us to be members of Inclusive Church, we were delighted to welcome as our guest preacher Rosemarie Davidson-Gotobed, National Minority Ethnic Vocations Officer for the Church of England. Read more

Supporting justice for Palestine and avoiding antisemitism

Date:
28th May 2019

"I believe, along with an increasing number of Jews young and old, many of them Israelis, that … we can forgive ourselves for what we have done to the Palestinians in our own pursuit of safety and freedom, and that we can open Israel to the wonderful people with whom we share the land. I believe that as citizens of the UK, the USA, or wherever it is that we live, that we have a responsibility to demand of our governments that they pursue this goal." - Mark Braverman. Read more

Apocalypse Now #4: Heaven’s Perspective on Prayer

Date:
28th May 2019

"Our prayers are ushering in the kingdom of God, one life at a time. A world in which a prayer to God has been offered, is a world in which a prayer to the Emperor has been denied. And if we can learn to turn our eyes from the lures of the empire in our world, with all its seductions an coercions, then we are also learning to turn our lives from the violence that the empire generates, and are bringing into being the peaceable kingdom of Christ for which we pray." - Simon Woodman. Read more

Breaking down barriers

Date:
21st May 2019

"With all of the scientific evidence mounting up, why is it so difficult for us to realise that we are facing an environmental crisis? We have to grapple with that sense of privilege that we believe we have, as human beings, over the rest of creation. We have to learn to see ourselves as part of this creation in a new way, and we have to learn to bring the language of community into our relationship with the created order in the same way that we live in community with one another. We need to learn what it means to live in community with the whole of creation." - Paul Martin Read more

Apocalypse Now #3: Heaven's perspective on the Empire

Date:
13th May 2019

"What if the good news of the gospel is that everyone is in? What if all things, all people, all creatures under heaven, fall within the universal, redeeming, and forgiving love of God? Read more

Apocalypse Now #2: Heaven's perspective on the church

Date:
9th May 2019

Read more

The Barren Fig Tree

Date:
1st May 2019

"‘And your religion’s gone wrong too’, says God. ‘You think I want solemn assemblies, offerings and incense? You’re wrong! The worship I want is that you do good, seek justice, rescue the oppressed... but you are failing in that, sinful nation! … What a useless vineyard, cut it down! Read more

Apocalypse Now #1: Heaven’s perspective on Power

Date:
28th Apr 2019

"When we come to read Revelation today, we may find it helpful to do with John’s text what he did with his own scriptures. That is, to bring our own world to the world of the text, submitting our lives to its imaginative and transformatory effects, learning to see the world the way John saw it, and in so doing gaining heaven’s perspective on our own earthly situations." - Simon Woodman Read more

Jesus, remember me

Date:
23rd Apr 2019

“Who we are is remembered by God, and held fast eternally by God as part of God’s creative, dynamic being. God remembers us, and everyone who has ever lived has a place in God’s mind. Nothing is lost, everything is redeemed, all sins are forgiven, and eternity is ours.” - Simon Woodman Read more

Marching for a new world

Date:
15th Apr 2019

"All too often we live as though the 'good news' Jesus proclaimed was a message of middle class guilt and mild self-loathing, rather than one of triumph in the face of death, and joy in the face of sorrow. But there is good news to be found on Palm Sunday, and there is joy to be found in following Jesus as he marches with his followers to bring about a new world." - Simon Woodman, preaching at Bloomsbury on Palm Sunday Read more

What does your God look like?

Date:
8th Apr 2019

'The journey to inclusion starts when we realise that the image of the black Christ, the female Christ, the gay or trans Christ, the homeless or disabled Christ, are not idolatrous perversions, but actually are authentic representations of the diversity of the body of Christ.' - Simon Woodman. Read more

Perfect Love

Date:
7th Apr 2019

"Many times when we love, we love other people in ways in which we like to be loved ourselves.[...] Love is never centered in me and what I want to do, it’s centered in the other." Read more

Ask, Seek, Knock

Date:
31st Mar 2019

"There are no cultural barriers that render God accessible only to white middle aged men aged 18 to 55. Just a door that will be opened." Read more

The Transfiguration

Date:
21st Mar 2019

"We can change this world through love. And that is the voice of God." Read more

Jubilee Justice

Date:
17th Mar 2019

"Where justice principles are applied, as in the case of a Jubilee, there remains the opportunity for human flourishing" Read more

What Disturbs You?

Date:
1st Mar 2019

"When we get who Jesus really is and what he really did and what that means for us to be together, then we can deal with the provovation. We can provoke each other. We can share honestly what's going on in our lives" Read more

Shifting Perspectives

Date:
25th Feb 2019

"So perhaps the author of Proverbs is referring not to the path planning of spreasheets, agendas and 5 year plans, but perhaps of the authentic millennial who chooses values above paychecks, authenticity above ease" Read more

The Hope That We Know

Date:
20th Feb 2019

"It's difficult when a Victoria sponge becomes your weapon of hope, doesn't it really?" Read more

On Choosing and Being Chosen

Date:
17th Feb 2019

"We now live by the story of 'my right', 'my freedom to choose' - that's the most significant thing about my person - 'I choose therefore I am'" Read more

The Laughing Christ

Date:
27th Jan 2019

“The God who is interested only is supplying needs is a rather stingy God” Read more

The Stature of Waiting

Date:
20th Jan 2019

“These and many, many more are our opportunities for glimpses and echoes, catching a sense of God” Read more

Theology Live 2019

Date:
16th Jan 2019

The podcasts are now available from the Theology Live! 2019 conference, held at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church on 10th January 2019. Read more

Better Together

Date:
12th Jan 2019

"These epiphanies don't happen in isolation, they happen in community with other people." Read more

The One True God?

Date:
1st Jan 2019

"Does our belief in one God of all the earth rule out the possibility that others might know and worship the true God in ways that seem very alien, or even unacceptable, to us?" Read more

Is a Virgin Birth Inconceivable?

Date:
23rd Dec 2018

"We are invited to allow Mary to interpret the significance of her own child to us, rather than simply allowing the voices of men to overlay the miracle of the incarnation with speculation about the state of her virginity."  Simon Woodman, preaching on "Is a Virgin Birth Inconceivable?" at Bloomsbury, 23 December 2018 Read more

Palestinian Sermons

Date:
9th Dec 2018

Two Bloomsbury sermons recently have reflected on the situation facing Palestinians in the occupied territory: Simon's sermon on the human sacrifice of Jephthah's Daughter, and Zoughbi's sermon on Naboth's Vineyard. Read more

The Massacre of the Innocents

Date:
9th Dec 2018

"Matthew places God in his story in the person of the baby Jesus, a human at risk, on the run, helpless, innocent. This is deep theology, because it questions our whole notion of who God is. If God is an almighty God, all powerful, all knowing, omniscient and omnipresent, then God runs the risk of becoming a dictator God, or worse, a tyrant God." Simon Woodman, preaching on 'The Massacre of the Innocents' at Bloomsbury, 9 December 2018. Read more

A Palestine Reflection

Date:
2nd Dec 2018

A group of us from Bloomsbury have just returned from a couple of weeks visiting Israel-Palestine, and I can honestly say that from my perspective it was one of the most moving and thought-provoking things I have done in a very long time. Read more

Independence and Interdependence

Date:
4th Nov 2018

Simon continued our Communion preaching series 'Why This Church?' looking at Independence and Interdependence between Baptists.  Read more

Antilectionary: Does God Care About Hairstyles?

Date:
28th Oct 2018

The #antilectionary continues with Luke's sermon on whether God cares about hairstyles... Read more

Antilectionary: Rape Culture, #MeToo, and the Bible

Date:
21st Oct 2018

The Antilectionary series continued this week with Simon preaching on the distressing story of the Levite's Concubine. Read more

Antilectionary: Incest and Lot’s Daughters

Date:
14th Oct 2018

"We need to make the effort to read this horrific story from the point of view of the women, rather than the men. When we do this they move from being archetypical evil women who sexually abuse their own father, to become women who are themselves the victims of sexual violence and constraint, and whose actions are acts of great courage in the face of great threat." Read more

Consider the Lilies

Date:
7th Oct 2018

Sunday was Bloomsbury's Harvest Service. Listen to this podcast to hear an interview with Graham about the relationship between his faith, and his environmental concern, followed by the Bible reading, and Simon's (short) sermon. Read more

Antilectionary: Do Miracles Still Happen?

Date:
30th Sep 2018

Bloomsbury Minister Simon Woodman takes a hard look at the 'strange' healing stories of Peter's shadow and Paul's handkerchiefs from the book of Acts. Read more

Antilectionary: Sodom and Gomorrah

Date:
23rd Sep 2018

Luke preaching on Sodom and Gomorrah - and what it might (and might not) mean for those of us who read it today.  Read more

Antilectionary: Christianity and Slavery

Date:
16th Sep 2018

Dawn preaching on Christianity and Slavery. Read more

Murder! We're all Cain

Date:
9th Sep 2018

On Sunday, Simon challenged us to realise that Cain, the first murderer, is alive and well and living in our midst. Read more

Why This Church? Congregational Church Government

Date:
2nd Sep 2018

"What would it look like if our gathering included discernment together on issues of politics, or immigration, or racism, or homophobia, or anti-Semitism, or Islamophobia? Not with a view to necessarily all agreeing at the end of it, but with an intent to hear from one another, and in doing so to hear from Christ himself." Read more

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Experiencing the Depths of God

Date:
26th Aug 2018

In our daily living, through the people we meet, through our inner reflections and spirituality: don’t accept a diminished or restricted God! But let what is thought, what is experienced, what is sought after, take people deeper and deeper into God. We are good at doing rather than being – but perhaps to us especially comes the word to ‘stop’. Read more

Antilectionary: Do Spiritual Gifts Still Happen?

Date:
19th Aug 2018

'I’d like us to keep at the forefront of our minds the question of how Spiritual Gifts can contribute to the common good? How they can be of the benefit of those beyond the community and individuals that receive and use them?' Read more

Hebrews: The Returning Jesus

Date:
12th Aug 2018

In the last of our series on the book of Hebrews, Simon asks what it means to speak of the return of Jesus. Read more

Why This Church? The Primacy of the Local Church

Date:
5th Aug 2018

Our series of Communion Sermons on the theme of 'Why This Church?' continued on Sunday, as Dawn led us in an exploration of 'The Primacy of the Local Church'. Nyaueth and Andreea helped lead the prayers of intercession afterwards. Read more

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Hebrews: The Vulnerable Jesus

Date:
29th Jul 2018

In Sunday's sermon, Simon invited us to reflect on Jesus as the vulnerable 'scapegoat' who is sent outside the city wall to suffer, again and again and again. Read more

Hebrews: The Visible Jesus

Date:
22nd Jul 2018

In today's sermon from Bloomsbury, Luke Dowding invites us to see Jesus in lives lived at rest in God, rather than in the busy-ness of our own efforts. Read more

Shalom in Albania

Date:
15th Jul 2018

Bloomsbury was delighted to have our BMS World Mission link missionary Revd Dan Dupree preaching on Sunday. He spoke about Shalom, and how the good news of Jesus is affecting the impoverished communities of Tirana where he is based. Read more

Hebrews: The Accessible Jesus

Date:
8th Jul 2018

On Sunday, Simon continued our series on the book of Hebrews. Read more

Church Anniversary: Mark Oakley - It is what it is

Date:
1st Jul 2018

Read more

Hebrews: The Familial Jesus

Date:
24th Jun 2018

"A Christian community such as a church is far more than a collection of individuals who have gathered together around a shared set of values, or some shared goals. We aren’t just brothers in arms in some fight against evil in the world. We are a family – sisters and brothers with Jesus, and children of God. We are partners with Christ in his mission to bring good news to all people, and we are the heirs of the promise that the dwelling place of God is with humans. Jesus dwells in our midst; he is our brother, and we are his family. And therefore who we are as the family of Christ matters, because it is through our familial relationships that Christ is made known. If we are dysfunctional, then we present a dysfunctional Christ. If we are anxious or destructive, then we present an anxious and destructive Christ." Read more

Hebrews: The Pastoral Jesus

Date:
10th Jun 2018

"Martyrdom in a Christian context never involves seeking death. But it does mean that we can be faithful unto death, and do with certainty that the Pastoral Jesus has already given us the gift of life that transcends the actual lived days and moment of our lives." Read more

Tommaso’s baptism story

Date:
10th Jun 2018

It was a privilege for us to baptise Tommaso this morning at Bloomsbury. Here is his story of why he came for baptism. Read more

Why This Church? Believers' Baptism

Date:
3rd Jun 2018

“I often describe baptism as being a bit like a wedding, because both are places where people make promises in church. And the thing about a wedding is that you’re no more in love after you’ve said ‘I will’ than you were before; and in fact a wedding which is not built on a foundation of already existing love is probably deficient. But nonetheless something changes: the unmarried become married. And so with baptism. At one level nothing changes, faith is already present (and if it isn’t, then the good Baptist in me still wants to argue that something is deficient), and words of commitment spoken before God and a congregation don’t change that. And just as the exchange of rings doesn’t make a marriage, neither does the action of immersion into water make a Christian. But promises and action do still make a difference.” Read more

Hebrews: The Sustaining Jesus

Date:
27th May 2018

"The people of God are, as they have always been, those who hear, embrace and persevere in the word of God, regardless of their religious affiliation. And if this is true of Jews and Gentiles, I would want to suggest that it is also true of those who seek the truth of the word of God in other religious traditions. None of us have a monopoly on truth, whether Jew or Gentile, Christian or Muslim, Baptist or Roman Catholic, or whatever. What we have in common is that God reaches out to us in love to draw us to himself, and that none of us understands fully what this means. For those of us who search for God within the Christian tradition, however, what it means for us is an unswerving focus on the revelation of God in the person of Jesus." Read more

You’re not listening to me! Pentecost and the healing of broken relationships

Date:
20th May 2018

It can be hard sometimes, can’t it, to love one another? It can be hard to live together with the differences that we have. Differences of theology, belief, style, or preference. Some of us like noise in worship, some of us like silence. Some of us like the organ, some of us would prefer drums. Some of us like intellectual sermons, some of us struggle with them. And I could go on, and on… Read more

Water and Blood - Escaping Scapegoating

Date:
13th May 2018

'The significance of Jesus being truly innocent is that when the collective guilt of society is placed on him, and when he is crucified for the sins of the world, it is a once-for-all sacrifice which is effective eternally, in all times and in all places. The insight here is that people can only be freed from their compulsion to scapegoat others when something decisively breaks that cycle, and that something, within the Christian tradition, is the cross of Jesus. The spiral of death is disrupted by the sacrificial death of Jesus, and those who encounter that disruption are given the capacity to enter into a new way of living where life, and not death, is dominant. Those who know that their sins have been forgiven by Jesus’ death, can discover that they no longer need to offload their guilt onto scapegoats, and so they can start to see new ways of dealing with human sin that take us in the direction of eternal life, rather than death. So the person who has embraced eternal life in Christ Jesus will see pathways to restoration and rehabilitation in others, where many will see just evil and danger. The person who has been born again from above, will see possibilities of forgiveness and new life where others see just punishment and death. The person who has been baptised into Christ’s body, and who shares in the spilled blood of the cross at communion, will know that they are a sinner saved by grace, and that they should not judge others, lest they too be judged. The person who believes that in Jesus, God became flesh, and died and was raised, will know that the potential for new life can emerge from even the darkest of lives,and so they will resist any attempt to write off anyone as beyond redemption.' Read more

Truthful Testimony in a World of Fake News

Date:
6th May 2018

'It is so easy for us to hate one another, just as it is so easy for us to hate ourselves. Of course, we don’t call it hatred. We are far too reserved for that kind of language. But we might admit, sometimes, to finding someone ‘a little bit difficult’. Which is, of course, code for something far worse. And we might subtly but effectively side-line those whom we struggle to love, quietly distancing ourselves from our sisters and brothers in Christ. And we might find ways of exhibiting our passive aggression towards others, all the while maintaining our own perspective of self-righteous restraint. 'But, but… if we can learn to love the children of God, if we can learn to obey the command of God spoken in Christ that we should love one another as he has loved us, then this is a victory of faith which can conquer the world.' Read more

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God loves you, get over it!

Date:
29th Apr 2018

Listen again to Ruth's final sermon at Bloomsbury, including the welcoming into membership of Kathleen and Said, and Simon and Ruth leading a communion using a liturgy for communion in two voices. Read more

Speaking with boldness

Date:
22nd Apr 2018

"What Christ offers us is an opportunity to speak with boldness, to stand before God, to have the spirit in us, leading us. But this is a boldness that isn’t whispering behind doors, it is not speaking in arrogance without listening to others, it is one of freedom and humility that has an attitude and desire to reach unity together." Read more

Living Resurrection

Date:
15th Apr 2018

"What we are, and will become, is not yet seen, not even by ourselves. We cannot yet see resurrection. We do not know what it will look like, or what shape it will have in our lives. All we know is that it is like Jesus." - Ruth Gouldbourne preaching at Bloomsbury, 15 April 2018. Read more

Jonah and the Worm: An ecological reading of Jonah

Date:
15th Apr 2018

Read more

Give us today our daily bread

Date:
1st Apr 2018

We pray for daily bread for the same reasons the Israelites gathered manna in the wilderness, to learn obedience to God who guides us into works of goodness, humility, and charity. The prayer for daily bread, you see, is not about me, or even about us, lest we think that God especially favours us by answering our cry for food. Rather, it’s a prayer that takes us into solidarity with those who lack, and which drives us into action to see the hungry fed, the poor raised up, and the impoverished released from the snares of debt. It is a prayer that takes us into good works of transformative charity. Read more

Your kingdom come, your will be done

Date:
25th Feb 2018

A sermon by Ruth Gouldbourne, preached at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church for the second Sunday in Lent, 25 Feb 2018. Read more

Our Father in Heaven...

Date:
18th Feb 2018

'I’ll say this as bluntly as I know how: I don’t think prayer changes God, or God’s mind, or God’s activity in the world. In fact, I’ll go further: I have a suspicion that to utter a prayer list according to some set incantation such as, ‘in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen’, might actually be sorcery.I am deeply concerned when humans think they can control God by invoking prayer rituals or practices.' Read more

Don't tell me what to do!

Date:
4th Feb 2018

Read more

A stumbling block to whom?

Date:
28th Jan 2018

The desire to protect the faith of the so-called-weak, can too easily become an excuse to perpetuate the abuse of those who are in fact far weaker, because they have no voice. The thing is, it is notoriously difficult for the powerful to judge who is weak, and who is strong. Any loss of power by the powerful runs the risk of becoming, in their mind, an experience of persecution; whereas in actual fact it might just be an equalising of power with those who until now have not had any. And so Christians sometimes fail to challenge injustice because of our deep-seated, internalised, and unacknowledged commitment to maintaining our powerful place in the status quo. And we then end up passing judgment on others who challenge the status quo, because we have become so entrenched in our position of strength, that we cannot see the alternative as anything other than an attack on our liberty. Putting it very bluntly: one person’s stumbling block is another person’s justice issue. Read more

Can Anything Good Come From Nazareth

Date:
14th Jan 2018

"If our identity is first created and then sustained by shutting out the other, eventually the self we create will become so fragile, and so in need of constant defence, that all our energy and all our self will go into that protection. I suggest that when we see people who are so afraid of the other, so determined to shut out all voices but their own, well then we have become so concerned with sustaining our self-created identity that that very identity is eating us alive." Read more

Theology Live! 2017

Date:
11th Dec 2017

Papers from Theology Live! 2017 Read more

Tales of an Intern

Date:
13th Aug 2017

Reflections by Stephanie, who took a summer placement at Bloomsbury Read more

Our next Sunday Service is:

26th January 2020

11:00am - 12:00pm

We offer thoughtful and reverent worship, with an impressive pipe organ, a choir, and a liturgical style. Our preaching is progressive, and inclusive in its theology and application. Our Sanctuary is wheelchair accessible, and we produce our service sheets in large print versions.

Followed by Sunday Meal:

12:30pm - 1:30pm

The congregation share a light and affordable meal, together with people from the local community.

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