Sermons by preacher

Listed below are the most recent sermons preached by our residential clergy. Please click on any date for a text transcript.


The Very Revd Professor Martyn Percy, The Dean

29 April 2018 - Choral Matins

Sometimes, God needs to convert the church, and can’t do it from within. So, God works from without. The Dean challenges our approach to mission in the run up to 'Thy Kingdom Come'.


The Revd Canon Edmund Newey, The Sub Dean

20 January 2019 - Choral Matins

The beauty of holiness is perhaps glimpsed best of all when it catches us unawares. The Sub Dean reflects on perceiving beauty in such a way as to lead into an apprehension of the glory of God.

6 January 2019 - Festal Eucharist with Incense

The wise men stand for all that is good in humanity: the desire to seek and find God’s presence in the world; the desire to offer themselves and their gifts in worship of God and service of others. The Sub Dean reflects on lessons learned from the magi during this Festal Eucharist of Epiphany.

9 December 2018 - Choral Eucharist

This song is sung out of overflowing joy – joy at the workings of God among humankind; joy that, in Christ, heaven and earth are reconciled. The Sub Dean invites us to take a closer look at Zechariah's song, the Benedictus.

18 November 2018 - Choral Matins

Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people. The Sub Dean explores the role of parables in unfolding the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven by stirring up our hearts and souls.

21 October 2018 - Choral Matins

We are endowed with the gift of song, but it is masked, trapped, knocked off key, by our enslavement to things that are less than God. The Sub Dean considers the difficulty of learning to sing the Lord's song in our lives.


The Revd Canon Nigel Biggar, Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology

7 October 2018 - 'Thank God for the Royal Air Force' - Choral Matins

With the commemoration of Remembrance Day approaching and the centenary of the Royal Air Force upon us, Canon Biggar reflects on reasons that we should give thanks to God for the R.A.F.

9 September 2018 - On Leaving 'Vengeance' to God - Said Matins with Hymns

It’s often said that the Old Testament is all about vengeance and retribution, and the New Testament all about compassion and forgiveness. This is an oversimplification, says Canon Biggar. But how should Christians respond to appalling acts of evil?

12 August 2018 - On Christian 'Sin' - Choral Matins

Christianity cannot be simply pessimistic. After all, it's not simply about sin, but also about salvation. Canon Biggar explores the Christian doctrine of sin which is both realistic and hopeful.

13 May 2018 - Choral Matins

Canon Biggar reflects on the treatment of 'empire' in the scriptures. Acknowledging a diversity of opinions and welcoming debate, he argues against the view that the Bible is straightforwardly 'anti-imperialist'. He concludes with an open invitation: 'I don’t for a moment suppose that you will all agree with my views, but I do commend the topic of empire to you as something that deserves your attention and reflection.'

29 April 2018 - Choral Eucharist

Sometimes it’s best to forego—to sacrifice—vindication. Best, lest the risk of letting sinful, destructive passion get the upper hand. Canon Biggar explores the self-sacrificial love by which we participate in the eternal, death-defying life of God.


The Revd Canon Sarah Foot, Regius Professor of Ecclesiastical History

6 January 2019 - Said Matins with Hymns

On the feast of the Epiphany, the manifestation of the Christ-child to the Gentiles, Canon Foot reflects on the meaning of the epiphany for us who know Him by faith.​

23 December 2018 - Choral Eucharist

'Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.’ Canon Foot reflects on Mary's faith as we approach Christmas.

28 October 2018 - Choral Matins

For the feast of the apostles Simon and Jude, Canon Foot challenges us to respond to the Bishop’s charge to this diocese for a renewal of Catechesis, to bring more new believers to faith. She invites us to consider which counterfeit idols that we worship in our own lives may prevent us from responding to the love of God.

23 September 2018 - Choral Eucharist

The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again. Canon Foot reflects on the disciples' fear and confusion in the face of Jesus' prophecy and reminds us that Jesus' love endures despite our fear.

2 September 2018 - Said Matins with Hymns

For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. Canon Foot explores the passages on the Tower of Babel and the day of Pentecost, reminding us that our need for home is met in the Church, through Christ and the work of the Spirit.


The Revd Canon Graham Ward, Regius Professor of Divinity

20 January 2019 - Choral Eucharist

Blessings abound when everything is divinely fitting – wellbeing is nurtured and Christ worshipped. Canon Ward explores the theme of divine transformation, from creation to the miracle of changing water to wine.

30 December 2018 - Choral Matins

We are known by God, that we might know him. Canon Ward explores the question 'Who is God?'

25 November 2018 - 'The Crucified King' - Choral Eucharist

Here’s the riddle: the king is also the crucified one, the sacrificed one, the one despised and rejected, the one born in humble, lowly conditions. Canon Ward reflects on the paradoxical nature of the Kingship of Christ.

14 October 2018 - Choral Matins

Hell is everything His love refuses. And the salvation He brings is deliverance from the loveless, bitter condition that some human beings have consigned themselves to. Canon Ward explores the seemingly paradoxical nature of a loving God who may also exercise the authority to cast into hell.

23 September 2018 - Choral Matins

How do we reconcile the Gospel with the daily pain we have to encounter and cannot ignore? Canon Ward considers the concepts of justice and reconciliation, challenging us to go in the peace of Christ to love and serve the world.


The Venerable Martin Gorick, The Archdeacon of Oxford

16 December 2018 - Choral Eucharist

Homeward Bound: Advent to Christmas. The Archdeacon reflects on coming home to God's love and life.

25 November 2018 - Choral Matins

We are supposed to be stirred up today to good works, and to lives of faith and sacrifice. The Archdeacon encourages us on this day of Christ the King to prepare for the upcoming season of Advent, for the opportunity to welcome the coming of Jesus.

7 October 2018 - 'No Man is an Island' - Choral Eucharist

‘No Man is an island, entire of itself’. The Archdeacon explores Genesis 2, sex and marriage.

9 September 2018 - Choral Eucharist

Bring faith and action together. The Archdeacon challenges us to do away with favouritism, remembering that the poor in the world may also be rich in faith.

26 August - Said Matins with Hymns

The two most difficult things to get straight in life are love and God. The Archdeacon explores the connection between truth and the love of God expressed in Jesus Christ.


Canon Professor Carol Harrison, Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity

23 December 2018 - Said Matins with Hymns

Rather than simply telling his people who He is, God has now decided it is time to actually show us exactly what he means Himself. Canon Harrison reminds us of the importance and wonder of God Himself being born as a human.

15 July 2018 - Said Matins with Hymns

We may be wanderers, but because of God’s continuing faithfulness, we are not fugitives. Canon Harrison reflects on the wandering banishment of Cain and encourages us to wander not as fleeing fugitives but as loving sojourners.

17 June 2018 - Choral Matins

‘Extemporising’  Canon Harrison reflects on the spiritual discipline of extempore preaching: those 'moments of love, when we forget ourselves, abandon ourselves, act freely, unself-consciously, spontaneously; when we are inspired, consumed, drawn by the object of our love.'

6 May 2018 - Choral Eucharist

For love cannot be forced, coerced or commanded. Love is, by definition, only love when it is a free response to being loved. Canon Harrison reflects on our God who is Love.


The Revd Canon Grant Bayliss, Diocesan Canon Precentor

13 January 2019 - Choral Matins

Being baptized is not simply a matter of repentance and symbolic washing in water. The Diocesan Canon Precentor reflects on the significance of Christian baptism as we celebrate the Baptism of Christ.

16 December 2018 - Choral Matins

Judgement is the fullness of encounter with God, when we shall see him as he is, face to face and we shall know even as we are fully known. The Diocesan Canon Precentor explores the Advent theme of judgement.

21 October 2018 - Choral Eucharist

“Whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be a slave of all.” With the commissioning of Paul Harris, our new Dean's Verger, the Diocesan Canon Precentor reminds us of our call to participate in the gift of servant leadership.

30 September 2018 - Choral Matins

God is calling us not just to come into a house but to be part of an assembly. The Diocesan Canon Precentor explores the true meaning of church and encourages us to discover the love, fellowship and community that exist at the heart of God’s own being.

26 August 2018 - Choral Eucharist

When Jesus starts to unpack what he means in saying, “I am the bread of life”, themes of sacrifice, obedience, worship, intimacy, spirit and flesh, and the reality of Jesus’ identity, all coalesce. The Diocesan Canon Precentor challenges us to remember that in the eucharist we are both given bread and taken as bread.


The Revd Clare Hayns, College and Cathedral Chaplain

2 December 2018 - Choral Eucharist

The College Chaplain invites us to enter this Advent season, reminding us that we can acknowledge the shadows but also have hope that the light has already come into the world. 

19 August 2018 - Choral Eucharist

We are to imagine ourselves as hungry children waiting to be fed from a banquet. The Revd Clare Hayns reminds us that when we receive the Eucharistic bread and wine, we take into ourselves the very life of Christ.

8 July 2018 - Choral Eucharist

Paul says: ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness…for whenever I am weak, then I am strong’. The Revd Clare Hayns looks at the lives of Paul, Ezekiel, Jesus, and others to explore the paradoxical truth that we find strength when we give up self-reliance and begin to depend on God and others.

17 June 2018 - Choral Eucharist

God’s kingdom will continue to grow despite us; and God’s kingdom will continue to grow through us; and God’s kingdom will continue to grow because of us.  The College Chaplain explores two little seed parables.

11 March 2018 - Choral Eucharist

‘Blessed are the pure in heart' part of the Beatitudes Sermon Series [click for audio]


The Revd Philippa White, Succentor, Assistant College Chaplain, and School Chaplain

18 November 2018 - Choral Eucharist

The end is coming; but the end is something marvellous – God’s new creation. Looking through the apocalyptic readings, the Succentor encourages us, in the midst of chaos, to choose hope rather than despair.

16 September 2018 - Choral Eucharist

What does God call each of us to - and what will it cost? As the Cathedral commissions our new Organist, Cathedral Operations Manager, and Lay Clerk the Succentor challenges us all to remember that the call of God extends to everyone.


Janet Proudman, Cathedral Licensed Lay Minister

28 January 2018 - Choral Eucharist


Selected sermons by guest preachers:

2 December 2018 - Choral Matins with University Sermon - The Rt Revd Guli Francis-Dehqani, The Bishop of Loughborough

In advent we are encouraged to see waiting as something positive and alive with possibility. In this term's University Sermon, The Bishop of Loughborough calls us to embrace the waiting of the Advent season and rejoice in the present moment.

30 September 2018 - 'Cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic' - Choral Eucharist - The Bishop of Oxford

Teach us to be content with just enough. For that is the only way to joy. The Bishop of Oxford challenges us find contentment in our daily bread, the bread of life, Christ Himself.

30 June 2018 - Ordinations - The Rt Revd Dr Colin Fletcher, Bishop of Dorchester

Being a priest or a bishop are both wonderful callings but neither are the pinnacle.  If we are following the pattern that Christ laid out for us, being a servant is the highest calling of all. Bishop Colin encourages the newly-ordained deacons to remember our central aim of becoming a more Christ-like Church.

30 June 2018 - Ordinations - The Rt Revd Dr Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham

The acid test of a healthy church is not numbers, nor whether people enjoy church, nor yet how good and holy churchgoers feel. How is power used among us? Bishop Alan reflects on the servant ministry that Christ models for us, encouraging the newly-ordained deacons to 'beware the leaven of the Pharisees'.

20 May 2018 - Choral Matins with University Sermon - The Bishop of Ripon

Our lives are far more about navigating our way through mist than they are about enjoying the views from the top of the mountain. This Pentecost, Bishop Helen-Ann invites us to consider afresh not just who we are, but whose we are.