By Rev Mike Duff, vicar, St Jude’s Church, Southsea
We all have heroes – those people who we look up to, and would like to be like.
For you, it might be a particular celebrity whose style you admire, a Pompey footballer whose skills you’d like to have, or a Youtube blogger who seems to think like you do.
I’ve had teenage children, so I know that for many young people, it’s the latest boy band or indie band who become their heroes. They may pin up posters in their bedroom or follow them on Twitter or Instagram, and check what they’re up to.
We’re looking at heroes in our latest Funday Sunday event, from 10.30am this Sunday at St Jude’s Church, Southsea. As usual, we’ll offer you bacon baps, pastries and real coffee. Children can play Wii games or table football, do arts and crafts while you catch up on the Sunday papers.
Then we’ll have our half-hour presentation, which includes an exclusive performance by Southsea’s newest boy band. They’ll unveil their latest dance routine on our stage, to help us think about the phenomenon of having heroes and how we choose to worship them.
You won’t be surprised to hear that my hero is Jesus – someone who is utterly special to me and to many millions of other people across the world. Someone who lived a perfect life, performed miracles, taught us an amazing amount – and then took the blame for all the wrong things we do, when he died in place of us. Then, incredibly, he came back to life three days later, proving he was God in human form – and that there is life beyond death.
How we worship Jesus – by following in his footsteps, singing about him and examining every detail of his life – isn’t that different from how we follow our earthly heroes. Singing on the terraces of Fratton Park isn’t that different from singing in a church congregation.
The big difference I see is that our earthly heroes inevitably let us down at some point – the boy band breaks up, the footballer misses an open goal, or the golden celebrity couple gets divorced.
But Jesus doesn’t let us down – not ever.
If you come along on Sunday, we’ll tell you why we think that.