Blessed are those who hope in the Lord Our God, the Maker of Heaven and Earth: A perspective on the greatness of our hope in the Lord, in the light of the beauty of the Universe.

As we stand on the shores of our Universe and gaze into its depths, we discover that there is a beauty and a vastness in the night sky. Modern science has allowed us to look further than ever before to more distant horizons, to discover distant galaxies, extra-solar plan- ets, colliding black holes and the faint echo of the beginning of the Universe. As we look outwards into the Universe, and look inwards into our hearts, we nd ourselves contemplating a great mystery of the great- ness of God and His great love for us, seemingly small insigni cant creatures. In this talk we will explore some of these ideas about how contemplation of the Universe can raise our hearts to wonder at the greatness of God and how contemplation of sacred scripture gives us great hope for the future as it reveals that the Lord of the Universe has a special love and care for us and has indeed made us a `little lower than the