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

17 February 2019 - Choral Matins

Only in response to God’s infinite compassion may we hope to see and hear clearly and speak and live in righteousness. The Sub Dean explores three themes from this morning's readings: the names of God, the nature of service, and compassion.

3 February 2019 - Choral Eucharist

‘I looked, and lo! the glory of the LORD filled the temple of the LORD; and I fell upon my face’. The Sub Dean considers afresh the act of falling on one's face and the lessons to be learned by it.

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.


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

3 March 2019 - Choral Matins

It matters that we remember the figures of our common past who did extraordinary things for Christ, whose footsteps we struggle to follow. Canon Foot reflects on the life and deeds of St Chad, Bishop of Lichfield and Missionary, 672, who consistently testified to the love of God.

10 February 2019 - Choral Eucharist

Jesus called the apostles to save living souls from the death of sin, and to free them for life in his kingdom, so that they might share in the good news of the gospel in all its fullness. Canon Foot considers how the story of the calling of the first disciples can speak directly to us.

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.


The Revd Canon Graham Ward, Regius Professor of Divinity

24 February 2019 - Choral Eucharist

'So many, many thousand years beneath the dust did I in Chaos lie… from out of dust I rise and out of nothing awake.' Canon Ward considers afresh the goodness, beauty, and life-giving hope that genuine creativity brings.

3 February 2019 - Choral Matins

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.” In light of Holocaust Memorial Day and the week of remembrance that followed, Canon Ward reminds us that the good we are called upon to do is sometimes necessarily audacious.

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.


The Venerable Martin Gorick, The Archdeacon of Oxford

10 February 2019 - Choral Matins

'I waited patiently for the Lord.' The Archdeacon explores Psalm 40 as it moves from patient longing, lament and sadness, to joy.

27 January 2019 - Choral Eucharist

In God there is never us and them, but only us, for all are one in him. The Archdeacon encourages us to overcome division on this Holocaust Memorial Day.

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.


Canon Professor Carol Harrison, Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity

10 March 2019 - Choral Matins

Is life meant to be a continual turning; one continual Lent? Canon Harrison explores the theme of the gravity of grace.

27 January 2019 - Choral Matins

Today I offer you the choice of life and good, or death and evil. Canon Harrison considers afresh the coming of God to make his home with us in this season of Christmas and Epiphany.

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.'


The Revd Canon Grant Bayliss, Diocesan Canon Precentor

17 March 2019 - Choral Matins

“See, Lord, I can no longer keep silent before the ocean of your grace. I no longer have any idea how to express the gratitude that I owe to you.” The Diocesan Canon Precentor reflects on the message of St Isaac the mystic as we continue our Lenten journey to the Cross.

17 February 2019 - Choral Eucharist

Disturb us, Lord. The Diocesan Canon Precentor challenges us to pray that the hardnesses of our hearts and lives be melted and softened by the message of the Gospel.

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.


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

10 March 2019 - Choral Eucharist

In whatever way you can, may you commit yourself to the study of Scripture and in so doing, may you see more of God, who reveals himself through the word. The Succentor challenges us to enter Lent with a fresh heart to seek God as he is revealed in Scripture.

3 March 2019 - Choral Eucharist

Sometimes the vision of God’s glory does come as sheer gift. And sometimes – often, most of the time; it comes through our hard work. The Succentor reflects on the juxtaposition of the Transfiguration and the beginning of Lent and how this resonates in our own lives.

24 February 2019 - Choral Matins

What is the purpose of creation? The Succentor encourages us to keep our eyes open for the glory of God, revealed in the wonders of creation and human creativity.

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.