Nineteenth Sunday after Whitsunday
October 4th 2015
On more than one occasion in the King's Chapel Book of Common Prayer instructs the minister to recite “Comfortable Words”. At Holy Communion or at at the Burial of the Dead, the minister recites sentences of scripture that are, in a sense, comfortable. Words typically of Jesus, but also from Paul or other sources of scripture, that tell of God's love for us, the rest we receive in God, the peace given unto us. Words that for some of us, are written on our hearts—that we turn to in times of struggle or heartache:
“Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”1
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you.”2
“Though this body be destroyed, yet shall I see God.”3
“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”4
You know these sentences, these comfortable words, the Bible is full of them. And time and time again, when I have been called to the bedside of the ailing, or comfort those who grieve, I am asked to read ‘those comfortable words’.