the diary game

We all play the diary game, and none more so than the clergy. Wouldn’t it be lovely to respond to people without poring over the diary – to be able to meet up with parishioners on the spur of the moment – yes I’d love to come round and discuss x with you – let’s just…

on fasting, attention and desire

A week into Lent and I’m finding an interesting link between fasting, attention and desire. A Christian fast is mainly abstinence from food but in true postmodern 21st century style, we now apparently need social media fasts. I’m on one this Lent; limiting my time on social media to one short pre-supper slot, with nothing again…

Ash Wednesday

Penitential purple colour of kings, a seamless robe and Lenten altars hung heavy with the weight of watching. * Forty days to face facts, nights of unease or surprise like the first splash of violets in dead leaves. * Dust we are, to dust we shall return, by ashen cross and fast we learn that…

finding wisdom for your secret heart

An interesting little phrase in the psalm for this coming Ash Wednesday – something to ponder as we begin Lent, the traditional season for spiritual self examination. ‘My secret heart’ is how King David puts it, after he has fallen from grace and been brought up short for his adultery, by the prophet Nathan. ‘You…

out of the ground, hope

Did the year turn for you today? Because despite the grim weather forecast, which never materialised here, spring was definitely hovering, just out of sight… From November onwards, if leaves are still clogging up the grass, I turn a blind eye till nearly three months of indoor sofa dwelling, rug wrapping and evening candle lighting has…

you are enough

Have you ever been aware of living with the little lie that you’re not quite enough? Enough means sufficient. Sadly we pick up the impression from multiple angles of modern life that not only is there not enough, but that in some way, we’re not enough. It’s hard to bring up children with a sense of…

the inclusivity barb

I’ve been thinking about inclusivity. It’s a great word – inclusivity. It’s like tolerance. Tolerance and inclusivity are watch words for a civilised society, aren’t they? We like to think we’re inclusive and tolerant in the UK. We’d never elect someone who wished to exclude a singled out racial group from moving freely across its…

on properly feeling your feelings

Of all the people I see week in, week out, there’s someone I especially look up to, for her ability to stick with uncomfortable feelings. An older person, she’ll always answer the question, how are you, honestly, which is very rare. She’ll say things like ‘oh, I don’t know what’s going on with me –…