Welcome!

Hello – I’m Fr Grahame Bowland, an Anglican Priest in Perth, Western Australia. This is my theology blog. In my spare time I also dabble in software development; you can check out the things that I have made over at grahame.dev.

Lent 1 2024

This sermon was preached on the 18th of February 2024, the first Sunday in Lent. Text: Genesis 9.8-17 I’m going to start today’s sermon by telling a story. So let’s take a moment to imagine. Imagine that you live in a village on a plain. You share your occupation with that of most of your friends and neighbours. You farm. Your life is tied to the seasons. You sow, you tend, you reap....

February 18, 2024

The Feast of the Transfiguration, 2024

This sermon was originally preached in the Anglican Parish of Kalamunda-Lesmurdie, on the Last Sunday after Epiphany 2024. Texts: 2 Kings 2.1-12, 1 Kings 19.11-12, Mark 2.2-9 What would you do if God appeared to you… and told you emphatically that they are not the God that you believe in? What would you do if God told they are not your God, the God that you picture in your mind… they are so much greater, so much more wonderful than that....

February 15, 2024

Epihany +3 2024

This sermon was originally preached in the Anglican Parish of Kalamunda-Lesmurdie, on the Third Sunday after Epiphany 2024. Texts: Jonah 3 My guess is that when most of us hear the word “Jonah”, the word whale comes into our minds. We remember that God sent Jonah to Nineveh, but instead, Jonah ran away. Jonah ran away, and a series of escalating events led to him being swallowed by a huge fish, in whose belly he spent three days....

January 24, 2024

The Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord 2024

This sermon was originally preached in the Anglican Parish of Kalamunda-Lesmurdie, on The Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord, 2024. Texts: Mark 1.4-11; Acts 19.1-7 Why was Jesus baptised? In our reading from the Acts of the Apostles, we hear Saint Paul tell us that John baptized with the baptism of repentance. What did Jesus have to repent of? We all know that Jesus was fully human, but without sin: that’s the doctrine of our Church....

January 7, 2024

Epiphany 2024

Here is the sermon I preached for Epiphany 2024 (we anticipated the feast by a few days and celebrated it on Sunday, 31 December, as the sometimes rather odd APBA Calendar suggested.) I don’t normally post my sermons, but a few people asked for a copy of this one. I drew upon Warren Carter’s Matthew and the Margins and upon James Crossley and Robert J. Myles' Jesus: A Life in Class Conflict in preparing this....

January 3, 2024

Preaching From the Heart

Australia is in the midst of a profundly important debate. We are considering whether or not we will support The Voice to Parliament. The Uniting Church, through the Creative Ministries Network congregation, have coordinated a collection of sermons reflecting upon this issue. To quote John Bottomley, the editor of the collection: ‘Preaching from the Heart’ is a project of the Creative Ministries Network congregation in response to the invitation from the Statement from the Heart to join Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on a movement of the Australian people to a better future....

September 10, 2023

Bridges to Peace

This evening I went along to “Bridges to Peace”, a multi faith gathering hosted by the Anglican Parish of Darlington-Bellevue. It was a fabulous evening, with a generous, warm-hearted discussion. Perspectives on faith and reason were given from the traditions of Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and the Baha’i Faith. I was invited to offer a Christian reflection, which I’m posting below. It was a gathering of people who were willing to listen, and willing to share....

September 3, 2023

Hazelnut Pie, in honour of Julian of Norwich

(Jump to recipe) Today we launched a series of spirituality events in the Anglican Parish of Kalamunda-Lesmurdie. The first was led by the Reverend Bec Bydder, in celebration of the six hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the Revelations of Divine Love. For a bit of fun, I decided to bake a hazelnut pie, as a reference to this quotation from Julian: “Then he showed me a small thing, the size of a hazelnut, nestled in the palm of my hand,” Julian writes....

August 26, 2023

Theatre Review: Ladies Who Wait

“Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced, Beheaded, Survived” So goes the old ditty, gleefully recited by a fellow audience member standing near the bar during intermission. Ladies Who Wait is currently being performed at the Subiaco Arts Centre. On the surface it’s a bawdy, dark comedy: the Tudor Queens brought to life through a series of improbable encounters with two common servants, Alice (Colleen Bradford) and Agnes (Fiona Forster). Yet, there’s far more to this play....

August 18, 2023

Barbie: A Theological Reflection

Exploring how the film Barbie is in dialogue with the Biblical tradition, and the last fifty-odd years of feminist theology, and reflecting upon personhood as a central concern of the film.

August 16, 2023