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A Skinny Fairtrade Latte in the Food Court of Life

  • The End of an Era

    This evening I visited the chapel at Glasgow's Western Infirmary for the first and last time, sharing in a poignant and beautiful service/ceremony to mark its closure along with the hospital in a few weeks time.

    I have spent many hours at the Western... twice in A&E as a patient, umpteen times in Clinic 5 (breast clinic) and even more in MAU, F1, F2, G2, G3 and level 10 visiting folk from church.  The privilege of holding the hand of very sick people... The anxiety and the relief of results... the cup of tea from a china cup on the day I learned what fear actually is... the conversations in the car park or in lifts...

    As the Western closes and services are sent elsewhere, an era ends.  The future will be fine, in time the concerns (some of which are really quite serious) will be overcome and we will all forget that once we sat in a tatty, draughty Victorian hospital that was built a year after the Gathering Place.  The memories will live on on the hearts of all for whom it was a place of work or a place of treatment.  I am grateful for the Western and was pleased to be there tonight to say 'goodbye'.

  • What do Ministers do all day...

    I still wish I knew the answer to that one!  So far today it has included...

    Admin stuff before I left home

    Putting a new battery in the clock in the church corridor

    An important meeting off site

    A phone call on an important and fairly urgent matter

    A 'door-knocking' encounter from folk in crisis and needing support

    Sorting out heating for a room hire where it seemed not to have kicked in on time, which involved both checking the timers and carting numerous heaters and fire guards around the building.

    And it still isn't lunch time!

    So of course, instead of work, I opt for the displacement activity of blogging.

  • More Mystery and Less Function

    As I've been preparing for Pentecost this week, it has struck me that almost everything I read about the Holy Spirit is 'functional' - about the work and purpose of the third person of the Trinity.  Which is not everso helpful when I am working with three of the symbols/metaphors each of which convey something of the mystery of this aspect of the divine.

    My ideas have yet to coalesce in to anything coherent... I have two lines of thought neither of which quite works but hopefully between now and Sunday things will fall into place.  Given that the two strands of thought relate to ancient classical philosophy on the one hand and the legend of a coat of arms on the other, getting to a common end point is not going to be trivial!