The waiting game

It used to be the case – and I’m talking some years ago now – that during the Eucharist for Ascension Day a server would solemnly approach the Paschal Candle with a long candle snuffer and put it out.  That could have been during the reading of the account of the ascension from the Acts of the Apostles or after the Gospel or when in the Creed we said ‘and ascended into heaven.’ But wherever it happened in this dramatic act, the point was made that Jesus was gone.

The Paschal Candle, first lit from the new fire at the Easter Vigil, inscribed with the year, marked with the symbols of the beginning and the end, Alpha and Omega, and ‘wounded’ in five places, becomes from that point onwards a representation of the presence of the Risen Lord, who in his incarnation enters time – the year; as Christ encompasses time – the Alpha and Omega; bears the marks of his passion – the wounds; and yet is alive as the flame denotes.  But in fact Ascension Day, the fortieth day after the resurrection, if you follow St Luke’s chronology, is not about the absence of Jesus from that point onwards but his continuing presence.  So the flame is not extinguished but continues to burn until the fiftieth day, the Day of Pentecost, when that one flame is then ignited as a myriad of flames, on the heads, in the hearts of the disciples, the apostles, the church, us.

So the candle stays and the server has no job to do!

Before Jesus is taken from their sight on that holy mountain he says to his friends gathered around him,

‘stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.’ (Luke 24.49)

and in the Acts of the Apostles we hear how they responded to this command

‘When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, … constantly devoting themselves to prayer.’ (Acts 1.13, 14)

Like so many things that Jesus asks of them, asks of us, it was a tough call.  They were already outside of the city which had proved to be a hostile and dangerous place.  Ok, they had some friends there but lots of enemies, people who had a vested interest in making sure that the story about Jesus did not get out. They were already on the road that led them back to Galilee and their homes and their families and their nets and their seat of custom. After all, it was via this mountain that they had first arrived to triumphant shouts and much excitement just 48 days before.  They could leave and have a life! But Jesus asks them to go back, through those walls, through those gates and into that room, to stay, to play the waiting game.

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Parson James

 

There’s just this waiting game
And I don’t know how to play
It’s enough of a fight staying alive anyway
Yes, there’s this waiting game
And I don’t know how to play
It’s enough of a fight staying alive anyway.

Those are lyrics by the American singer-songwriter, Parson James, and they speak of a young gay man from an inter-racial background wanting to escape but knowing he has to wait.

Staying with it, staying there, not knowing how to play it, not sure if you have the ‘fight’ in you, it’s a tough call.  But this is what Jesus asks of those eleven and his mother, Mary. ‘Stay here in the city’. And that room that they went back to was packed full of emotion and memory.  It may well have been the room they used for the Last Supper, the room they retreated to after the crucifixion, the room Mary Magdalene left early in the morning to go to the tomb, the room she came back to with unbelievable news, the room in which Jesus appeared, without and then with Thomas.  Now it became the church, the first church of the Church, where the body of Christ gathered in prayer. It would be the room into which wind and flame would break, from which they would be expelled and from where they would be sent to live out their apostleship, their ‘sentness’.

Last week was another that began and ended with horror.  The events in Manchester were a manifestation of unbelievable evil and distorted religion and there is no other way to describe it. The images we woke to on Tuesday morning and since have been heart-rending.  Then on Friday the news from Egypt of twenty eight Coptic Christians slaughtered and another thirty-odd injured, on a pilgrimage to a monastery, was another tragedy being faced by the members of that ancient and holy church.

Manchester

Staying in the city

 

But alongside the terrible images were ones that I found strengthening. The crowds out in the centre of Manchester, lighting the flame, standing in solidarity, being brave, being united, in the city, was my encouragement.  ‘Stay in the city’ says Jesus to us, keep the flame burning and don’t extinguish it, for as St Matthew tells us in his account of the Ascension

‘Remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’ (Matthew 28.20)

The Alpha and Omega God, who bears the wounds, who is the light in the darkness, even when the clouds obscure our sight, doesn’t send us back to the city alone but is there with us, in the square, in the arena, on that bus, in that crowd, with the dying, with the wounded, with the compassionate, holding the afraid and wiping every tear from our eyes. Jesus knows he is asking a huge thing when he sends us back to play the waiting game, when he asks us to stay, but in asking he doesn’t leave us but stays with us – and that is why we never extinguish the flame.

Stay with us Lord,
as we stay with you,
in Manchester,
in Egypt,
in every place of pain,
of terror, of distress,
for we know that even in the darkness
your flame of life
gives light.
Amen.

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Triduum – The tomb

The tomb of Jesus has been in the news recently.  Whilst I was in Jerusalem on sabbatical the unheard of thing happened.  The tomb was closed to visitors for two days.  Not in recent history had this happened and it came after a long period of negotiation between the various denominations that have rights and vested interests in this most sacred place.  The tomb itself is located in what is called the Aedicule which is the free standing chapel under the rotunda.  I can’t say that it’s my favourite structure.  But what made it even more ugly than I think it is was the metalwork cage that seemed to surround it, to keep it together.  That was put in place during the period of the British Mandate in order to keep the structure in one piece.  But even that, for all its ugliness, was beginning to fail.  The Aedicule had been rebuilt in 1809-10 in the style described as Ottomon Baroque but it surrounded the original tomb which had become isolated from the mountain of which it was originally part.  The place where the body of Jesus was laid had been clad in marble to protect it from holy souvenir hunters.  But when the cladding was removed on 26 October and the material that lay beneath it removed, it was found by nightfall on 28 October that the original limestone burial bed was intact. This suggested to the archaeologists working on the project that the tomb location has not changed through time and confirmed the existence of the original limestone cave walls within the Aedicule.

The tomb was then sealed up and, when I went in as soon as it was open to pilgrims again, all I could see was fresh mortar between the marble panels.  But now, all the restoration work has been completed and the Aedicule is in a sound state to welcome millions more across its threshold, into the first chamber and then the burial place itself. It will be from this restored Aedicule that the Holy Fire will emerge for the first time this Easter.

The wraps coming off the restored Aedicule

But, to be honest, it still is a mammoth task of the imagination to imagine that this chapel, freestanding, under the dome was part of a cave in a rock into which had been carved a tomb.

Mark tells us all about it.

Then Joseph bought a linen cloth, and taking down the body, wrapped it in the linen cloth, and laid it in a tomb that had been hewn out of the rock. He then rolled a stone against the door of the tomb. (Mark 15.46)

Matthew tells us exactly the same thing as does Luke.  It’s John who adds a few more details

Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. (John 19.41)

But whether it was in a garden or not it’s clear that the tomb was hewn into the rock but the pilgrim can feel very disconnected with that.  But behind the Aedicule in the wall of the rotunda, close to the Coptic altar that clings to the back of the tomb is a little doorway that leads to somewhere more hidden and holy.

If you go through you find a kokhim complex, a series of passages cut into the rock in which are tombs (there is fantastic example alongside the road down the Mount of Olives which is signposted as the Tomb of the Prophets Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi).  Pilgrims clamber through the small opening and with a torch can make out the chambers, cold empty holes cut into the rock.  Some say that this was where Joseph of Arimathea, the same Joseph you gave his tomb to Jesus, was buried.  We don’t know that.  But what this place does help us do is to make a bit of a connection with what the original tomb of Jesus might have been like.

The emptiness of these tombs, the sense of abandonment that surrounds them is, of course, important.  The tomb is just the tomb, the place of resurrection, but abandoned, vacated, left behind. The very emptiness is a challenge to death and you get a sense of that in this great poem by John Donne called ‘DEATH, be not proud, though some have called thee’, one of his Holy Sonnets.

DEATH, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those, whom thou think’st thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy picture be,
Much pleasure, then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul’s delivery.
Thou’rt slave to Fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy, or charms can make us sleep as well,
And better than thy stroke; why swell’st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And Death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.

It’s a really, aggressive, almost cheeky, confident response to death, with that final cry of victory ‘Death, thou shalt die’. What could be stronger. So, however good the Aedicule now looks, it has to be an empty experience for the pilgrims who enter it if it is to speak properly of the resurrection to which it testifies. Those who bow and enter through its door must leave almost disappointed – there is nothing in it.

Abandoned .. empty

The stark ending to St Mark’s Gospel always has the ring of authenticity about it. The angel says to the women who have entered the tomb

‘Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him, just as he told you.’ So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them; and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid. (Mark 16.6-8)

We won’t find Jesus in the tomb – we must always meet him in the ‘Galilee’ of the world.

Alleluia. Christ is risen.
He is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Triduum – The tree

Whilst the cross is being venerated (in places where this sort of thing goes on) during the Liturgy of the Day on Good Friday the choir may be singing the traditional hymn ‘Pange Lingua’ (Sing my tongue) with the refrain known as ‘Crux Fidelis’

FAITHFUL Cross!
above all other,
one and only noble Tree!
None in foliage, none in blossom,
 none in fruit thy peers may be;
sweetest wood and sweetest iron!
Sweetest Weight is hung on thee!

So often in hymns and readings for this season the cross is referred to as a tree.  It’s a useful way to refer to the cross when you want to be able to make a connection between Adam and Jesus. If the first man, Adam, fell from grace because of the fruit of a tree then the new Adam will himself be the fruit of the tree that will restore grace.  Jesus is that Second Adam and so the tree connection makes the connection. The fruit of one tree brought death, the fruit of a second tree brought life. ‘None in fruit thy peers may be’, we sing as we ‘behold the wood of the cross’.

It was therefore wonderful for me in my quest for the ‘hidden and holy’ in Jerusalem whilst there on sabbatical last year, that I came across a monastery set right at the heart of modern Jerusalem but off the beaten track as far as pilgrims are concerned.

The Monastery of the Cross is in Emek Hamatzlevah, the Valley of the Cross which is now part of west Jerusalem, just below the Knesset, the Parliament of Israel. The place was founded around the 4th – 5th century on a site venerated by the early Christians as being where the wood was obtained from which the cross was made.  But the story that surrounds it is amazing.

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The Monastery of the Cross

It goes back to the hospitality of Abraham and his three visitors, three angels, an experience of the Trinity.  The tradition is that before they left after they had been fed by Abraham and Sarah, they gave their staffs, made of different woods, to him.  The story then moves on to after the events concerning Lot and his sinful acts that we read of in Genesis.  Lot comes to Abraham and asks how he can be forgiven.  The Patriarch tells him to take the three staffs left by the angels and plant them on the outskirts of Jerusalem.  He was then to water them with water from the River Jordan.  If they blossomed it would be a sign that God had forgiven him.  Lot takes the staffs and despite the attempts of the Devil to prevent him, waters them with Jordan water.  They blossom and grow into one tree composed of three woods, pine, cypress and cedar. The story then moves forward to the trial of Jesus.  Pilate orders that this cursed tree (as he sees it) made up of three woods of different heights, be felled and brought for use in the crucifixion.  That is what happened.

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The tree is watered and blooms

The monastery that you find today is peaceful and beautiful.  The frescos in the main church are stunning and seldom seen as there are few visitors.  Behind the main sanctuary is a chapel in which, beneath the altar, is a hole from where the tree was removed.  Whatever the truth of the story it was a beautiful and holy place and it put me in touch with the tree, with the wood.  I was reminded of that wonderful Anglo-Saxon poem, ‘The Dream of the Rood’, and a passage from it

I beheld sorrowful the tree of the Saviour,
until I heard it utter a sound;
it began to speak words, the best of wood:
“That was very long ago, I remember it still,
that I was cut down from the edge of the wood,
ripped up by my roots.”

I traced the journey of that tree from that valley across to where the Church of the Holy Sepulchre now stands which was itself at that time ‘without a city wall’ as Mrs Alexander’s hymn describes it. I climbed the steps up to Golgotha and to that other hole beneath the altar into which this tree was replanted. I had placed my hand in that first hole from which the tree had been ‘ripped up by my roots’ to us the Rood’s own words, and now placed my hands in this second hole, cut into lifeless rock in which the tree would bear fruit.  Then I went down the stairs that led to the quarry in which St Helena’s workers found the discarded wood, the discarded tree.

The carol ‘Jesus Christ the Apple Tree’ a setting by Elizabeth Poston of a poem by an unknown author dating back to the 18th century, begins like this

The tree of life my soul hath seen
Laden with fruit and always green
The tree of life my soul hath seen
Laden with fruit and always green
The trees of nature fruitless be
Compared with Christ the apple tree.

The tree we venerate is the tree of life and the fruit of that tree is what gives us life.  Planted, replanted, it continues to bear fruit.

Jesus Christ,
fruit of the tree that gives life,
may I too be
a fruit-bearer
and
a life-giver
as I follow you.
Amen.

Reveille

It hardly seems possible but there months have gone since the ‘last post’ on this Living God blog.  But it is.  Time passes very quickly and seems to concertina until it seems no time at all since I embarked on three months of sabbatical leave.  But today I was back at Southwark Cathedral as we celebrated Advent Sunday and the beginning of another Christian year and this season of preparation for Christmas.  It has been a fantastic three months and those who have been following my sabbatical blog will know some of the things that I got up to.  For those who didn’t get a chance to read it you can see all the blogs here.

One of the final things that I did in Jerusalem, where I spent half of the sabbatical, was to attend an Act of Remembrance at the Commonwealth War Cemetery on Mount Scopos.  In the early heat of the day we sat amongst the beautifully kept war graves and the Last Post and Reveille sounded out across the Jerusalem hills. This Advent Sunday is something of a reveille call for me, waking me up, bringing me back, alerting me to the things I have to do, reengaging me with the ministry at the Cathedral.

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Bugler and piper on Mount Scopus

 

That was really the thrust of my first sermon back at the Cathedral and so I post the text here.  I’m looking forward to resuming this blog and my Twitter prayers.  The sabbatical has been energizing and renewing and so, woken up and alert, I look forward to what lies ahead.

The readings for this Sunday are as follows: Isaiah 2.1-5; Romans 13.11-14; Matthew 24.36-44

Do you wake up naturally or do you need an alarm clock to get you up, someone shaking you, the smell of tea or coffee by your bed, or the sound of the ‘Today’ programme easing you out of your slumbers and into the harsh reality of the world? We all wake up differently – some are blessed to be able to leap from their beds with enthusiasm, new every morning, and some need dragging from their pit.

The poet Dylan Thomas in his play for voices, ‘Under Milk Wood’, paints for us pictures in words of the getting up routines of the people in the village of Llareggub.

The Reverend Eli Jenkins, in Bethesda House, gropes out of bed into his preacher’s black, combs back his bard’s white hair, forgets to wash, pads barefoot downstairs, opens the front door, stands in the doorway and, looking out at the day and up at the eternal hill, and hearing the sea break and the gab of birds, remembers his own verses and tells them softly to empty Coronation Street that is rising and raising its blinds.

and

Mary Ann Sailors, opening her bedroom window above the taproom calls out to the heavens
‘I’m eighty-five years three months and a day!’

It’s Advent Sunday and I can’t believe it. A couple of weeks ago I was in Jerusalem and it felt like summer. I come back to London and the streets are full of lights and the windows full of trees and it feels like winter and it looks like Christmas.

One of the last things I did before I left Jerusalem was to sit on the Mount of Olives and look at the view that Jesus and his disciples were looking at when he gave them the dire warning that we heard in the gospel. Well, it wasn’t the same view of course – no Dome of the Rock, no mosque, no Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jesus’ day, but some of it was the same.

What Jesus was saying to the disciples, what St Paul was saying to the Romans, is the call of the alarm clock, ‘Wake up’.

‘It is now the moment for you to wake from sleep’.

We begin a new Christian year today and what a year the last one was. To be honest I felt I must have been sleep walking, deluding myself about the nature of our society, about what the values were that define us, what the values were that motivate us, what kind of communities and societies we wanted to build for the whole of our society. In our Mayoral election I saw a glimpse of an affirmation of that but everything that’s happened subsequently has suggested to me that I was deluded.

The first part of my sabbatical I spent in Canada, perhaps the most liberal, accepting, inclusive and polite society I’ve ever encountered. That was in September and everyone we met was looking south across the border with the States and wondering what on earth was going on – but imagining, from their urbane liberal perspective, that the right thing would happen, that common sense and common values would prevail.

In Jerusalem at the Anglican Cathedral with its guest house and college loads of people from the States were coming and going. By October they were beginning to be anxious but it was going to be alright.

But the shock of Brexit became the shock of Trump and the image of the anti-elitists, Farage and Trump, standing by the gold-plated lift in Trump Tower said it all.

farage-and-trump

No comment

 

‘It is now the moment for you to wake from sleep’.

I’ve been reading Simon Sebag Montefiore’s fantastic biography of ‘Jerusalem’. When Jesus was predicting the destruction of the city it wasn’t, to be honest, something unusual that he was talking about – Jerusalem, as Montefiore describes in his book, is a city that’s been destroyed and rebuilt in almost every generation. Something, somewhere as iconic and wonderful and central and holy, the city of God on earth, is supremely vulnerable. The stones and the structures make no difference – things are vulnerable and tomorrow not one stone can be left standing on another. I think that we all now recognise the fragility of so much that we’ve trusted was stable and lasting and had the touch of the eternal about it. But there’s been a wakeup call and we have to respond.

Isaiah of course gives us a vision, not of desolation, not of destruction, not of the negative but of the positive, of building, establishing something good. The city will be built, something to look up to, the weapons for killing will become tools for planting. People will come to the mountain eager that God ‘may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.’

His is a fantastic word for us today as we embark on this new year of grace, as we wake up and realise that each new day and each new season and each New Year is laden with possibility. The wonderful thing about Jerusalem is that it was never really left a desolate heap of ruins for long, people came back, time and time again, Jews, Christians, Muslims, to rebuild it because it mattered, because it’s an icon in itself and more than humankind can imagine, it’s the City of Peace.

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Jerusalem – city of peace

 

The wakeup call that we’ve all had – and that’s regardless of the way in which we’ve voted, or the way that we’d have voted in the States – is that we need to work together on what the values are, the values that drive our society, the values that undergird the vision of what and who we want to be.

We’ve been clear what they are in this cathedral and I’m delighted to be back to continue with you and my colleagues to pursue them. Remember what we’ve said and committed ourselves to.

Southwark Cathedral an inclusive Christian community growing in orthodox faith and radical love.

We’re still inclusive and we need to be so even more than ever before. The fear of the other has been given a new legitimacy and is being articulated all around us. We have a better, God-given vision of the mountain to which all head, equally, as sisters and brothers.

We’re still committed to the faith that we’ve received and which is the ground in which we grow. Our faith in God is the bedrock on which we build this house of the Lord.

The love that we express and live, the embracing of one another, is even more radical. We’ve always been a community unafraid to challenge the zeitgeist now we have to be even more challenging and even less afraid to be the prophetic community that we know God calls us to be.

This is no time for sleeping, my brothers and sisters. This new year is God-given and in a few weeks’ time we’ll see how God gives, as in a manger we see a baby and recognise God with us. He will be rejected, cut down, destroyed, but his life and his words will not be defeated and out of the rubble he builds us, his living stones, into a true temple to glorify God.

This is no time for sleeping, it’s the time for rising and eating and breaking the fast and in the strength of the food that God gives, his own flesh, his own blood, this Eucharistic banquet, we can be the people that he’s called us to be, in the church he wants us to be, for the people that he calls us to serve, in such a time as this.

Wake us, Lord, from our sleep,
alert us to the world around us,
that with your passion
we may include those others would exclude,
love those others may hate
and witness to our faith
in a faithless world,
for Jesus’ sake.
Amen.

The last post

Every ten years I, like many other clergy, get the opportunity for a sabbatical.  My last one was in 2006 when I went to the States, South Africa and India.  It was a really important three months for me and I’m amazed at how often I still refer back to the things that I experienced then. But what that means is that I can have another sabbatical and that is what I am going to be doing in the autumn.

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The Last Post

However, with unusually efficient diary planning (that is not one of my strong points as anyone who knows me will be able to confirm) my summer holiday will almost segue with the beginning of the sabbatical. The term ‘sabbatical’ of course has its roots in the keeping of the sabbath and the sabbath rest that we look to as the ultimate gift of God to his people. The writer of the Letter to the Hebrews is hot on that towards the beginning of his letter

‘So then, a sabbath rest still remains for the people of God; for those who enter God’s rest also cease from their labours as God did from his.’ (Hebrews 4.9-10)

If it was good enough for God then it’s good enough for us.  So the real privilege is that I will be having the whole of September, October and November off.  I will be back for the ROBES Sleepout at the end of November but that will be the only break into this time of rest.

The reality is of course that it isn’t just an opportunity to lie on a sofa, watch ‘Jeremy Kyle’ and do nothing.  Instead I have the space to do again as I did in 2006 things that I want to do but simply haven’t the space and time to do. The plans, therefore, are that in September I will be in Canada visiting some great cities and seeing the Anglican church in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal.  That will be a real treat and will involve the 4 day train journey across the country from the west coast to the Great Lakes.

Then in October and the first part of November I will be in Jerusalem staying at the college at St George’s Anglican Cathedral. I’ve been to the Holy Land on many many occasions but never on my own.  I’m normally leading a group of pilgrims, shepherding them onto coaches, off coaches and out of gift shop queues. So it will be odd to be there onmy own doing things at my own pace.

But the principal reason for going there is that I have a plan.

When pilgrims stand on the belvedere at the church of St Peter-in-Gallicantu their guide will invariably point out a Greek monastery quite close by. ‘That is in the site of Hakeldama, the Field of Blood’ they say. We nod and take our photos and move on. There isn’t time to go down, there isn’t time to do everything.

Hakeldama

The monastery at Hakeldama

As pilgrims head up the road from the Church of All Nations to Mount Sion the guide will say ‘On your left is Absalom’s Tomb’; they may say ‘That is the monastery on the site of the martyrdom of St Stephen’ but as with Hakeldama there is no time to stop and visit.

Most pilgrims visit the same holy sites during their once in a lifetime pilgrimage to the Holy Land. It is right that they do that because we have to see the Church of the Holy Nativity, the Via Dolorosa, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the various places, Nazareth, Tabgha and suchlike in Galilee. But I am conscious that there are other holy places that we never see and yet probably have a great deal to say to the pilgrim who has already been to the ‘Top Ten’.

Two experiences in the last pilgrimage I went on earler this year have convinced me of this. The first was visiting Jacob’s Well in Nablus. In over twenty visits with pilgrim groups I had never been to this place and the opportunity to do so opened up and we visited it. It became a highlight of the pilgrimage for the whole group.

The second was in a throw-away comment from the bishop with whom I was co-leading the pilgrimage about a church that stands on the place where Mary and Joseph realised that Jesus was not with them after their visit to Jerusalem. I wanted to go and I want to go.

I have tried to find out what holy places I am missing out on. It is hard, if not impossible to do. Our focus is so much on the principal sites that we lose sight of the others. So I want to spend time visiting some of the ‘hidden and holy’ places.

My hope is that I can experience them, take some photographs, spend some time making a few notes and then writing up the experience with the intention of producing a book or website to help other pilgrims encounter the ‘hidden and holy’ because these places are also in our own communities and that is where the project comes back home – discovering the ‘hidden and holy’ where we are.

Then, finally, on my return I’ll spend a week in retreat, time to reflect on all these things.

So it’s all really exciting.  But the real thing I wanted to say is that I’ll be taking a sabbatical from this ‘Living God’ blog. There will be a sabbatical blog (look out for that please) because I don’t think I can resist the opportunity to share with others the experiences I will be having and reflecting on them and praying through them. So, as I titled this blog, this is the ‘Last Post’ ….. but only until December when I will resume thinking about what Living God means for us at Southwark Cathedral and beyond.

 I love Carol Ann Duffy’s poem ‘Last Post’ with those wonderful final lines

If poetry could truly tell it backwards,
then it would.

I hope that my sabbatical can help me look backwards and forwards, with the God of past, present and future. So this may be the last post for now but not the last word.

God of daily work
and sabbath rest,
bless all we have done,
all we do,
all that we will do,
with your strength,
in your grace,
by your love.
Amen.

In the Steps of Martin Luther

A Southwark Cathedral Pilgrimage 2017

sabbaticalthoughtsblog.wordpress.com/

Canda, Jerusalem, Mucknall

Southwark Diocesan Pilgrimage 2016

Hearts on Fire - Pilgrims in the Holy Land

A good city for all

A good city for all

In the Steps of St Paul

Southwark Cathedral Pilgrimage June 2015

LIVING GOD

Reflections from the Dean of Southwark

Passion in real time - a retreat for Holy Week

Led by the Dean of Southwark, the Very Revd Andrew Nunn

Andrew Nunn's reflections from General Synod

the personal views of the Dean of Southwark