Outlook Issue 25 Spring 2018
News and Views from St. Mary's Woodbridge
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From the Rector
… The heights by great men reached and kept Were not attained by sudden flight, But they, while their companions slept, Were toiling upward in the night. ‘The Ladder of St Augustine’ (1850) Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 1807-82 We were warned well in advance. The weather! Our ability to make conversation, show interest and converse with some sense of vigour, and with even a hint of expertise, can surely not be outshone by any other culture than our own. Before my cousin became too poorly to enter into any real or sensible conversation he would always begin his ‘phone conversation, with: ‘Really cold here, not a cloud in the sky’, or conversely, ‘Been raining all day, what’s it like with you?’ This is what we might consider a typical conversation preamble, which sets the scene for more meaty and mighty subjects. Quietly and gently we set the scene for dealing with life’s real issues. Here we can begin to express opinion. Here we can mark ourselves out as entrenched or prejudiced, or flexible or inclusive. Now we are seeking to reach an intellectual height, which will impress our colleague or neighbour or friend or even our foe. But just sometimes, we fail to improve beyond the weather. This is not necessarily our fault, but when it is cold, wet, windy and snowy the quiet growth of substance is hidden. We cannot contemplate life’s real issues. We cannot even express an opinion. We are weighed down with the survival of the moment. We want to be, or are warm. We want to be secure. We want to sleep. Hidden beneath the snow in our churchyard, in the cold and wet, bulbs were shooting their new life into the newness of spring. I didn’t notice. I was too busy with the weather, in mind and conversation. Easter for Christian people is about reaching and keeping a height in belief, in faith and in love. It is about accepting the toil of everyday living. It is allowing the profound energy of existence to burst into the spring with new life and hope. Through, and perhaps even because of the cold, the wet, the wind and the snow, something of beauty and majesty and glory is revealed. My worry is that I become so concerned about the weather that I fail to notice what is happening because of it! My love and prayer that you have a good Easter. Kevan S McCormack