A reflection at the beginning of Lent
These last few days have been a time of unlikely contrasts. Personally, as the start of the season of Lent was not only marked by a celebration of the Eucharist, but also by a iPGCE residential organised by Buckingham University, filled with lectures about marking, lesson planning and essay writing.
I have been surprised by the lack of acknowledgement and conversations about the horrid shootings in Florida earlier this week, despite being together with over 300 teachers and educational specialists. Does it show that this kind of news tragically has become too ‘normal’, or does it show that we are so focused on our own targets, that we lose interest in what is happening around us? And if the latter, does it imply we are losing compassion for those who are further away than the immediate?
Continue reading “Unlikely Contrasts”
A reflection just before the half-term holiday and the start of Lent
It is the week before the spring half-term, which this year is also the week before the start of Lent. Two good reasons to take stock and see how far we got. Especially for those of us who have started something new at the beginning of the academic year, a lot will have happened since September, and it is good to take some time to see where we are.
Continue reading “Taking Stock”
A further reflection on words, based on a sermon preached at St George’s Preshute on the Second Sunday before Lent.
Those of us who follow the Church of England lectionary, hear once more the famous words of the beginning of John’s Gospel: The Word was made flesh and lived among us. It was not that long ago that we heard the same reading read on Christmas Eve, or Christmas morning, and many of us will associate these famous words about the Word becoming flesh indeed with Christmas celebrations. Continue reading “When time and eternity meet”
A reflection for Holocaust Memorial Day
Last Saturday, 27th January, Holocaust Memorial Day was marked around the world. This year’s theme was ‘The Power of Words’, and it was suggested that the power of words is the moral response that they demand.
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A reflection on what truly matters
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Have you ever really, really wanted something? Not just wishing it, but with your whole being really wanting it? I’m thinking not just of objects, or presents, but more of achievements or particular situations you would like to be different. For example, you may want to do particularly well in a physics test, or be selected for the first team in netball or hockey. Maybe you want a particular relationship to be better, or – thinking big – peace in the world, or at least a bit more of it.
Continue reading “What do you really want?”
A Reflection on the Epiphany
For me, the Feast of the Epiphany is both about growing in wisdom and new beginnings. Maybe one of the reasons is that I defended my doctoral thesis on this day eight years ago, ready to move to Berlin the next day: wisdom, or maybe better learning, and a new beginning.
Continue reading “A Journey into the Unknown”
A reflection on Christmas, the New Year and the Church family
Based on a sermon preached at St Mary’s Marlborough
on the First Sunday of Christmas
Following earlier thoughts and reflections on Advent, Christmas and the New Year
On this first Sunday after Christmas, in many churches, the Holy Family is the central theme. There are times in the Church year when we remember Mary and Joseph individually, but this day we are invited to think about them as a family. What struck me a couple of years ago, when reflecting on this theme, is how Joseph, despite not being Jesus biological father, is fully given this father-role in Scripture and tradition. Joseph, as foster-parent or adoptive parent is not only taking the responsibility as Jesus’ father, but is also treated as such. For me, this is already an early sign that God in Jesus embraces all complexities of human life, including the complexities of family life.
Continue reading “The Holy Family”