(Or if you choose to exclude Sundays from your liturgical count then it's Day 35)
Children born into poverty are almost twice as likely to die before the age of 5 than those from wealthier families.
Give 5p for every birthday you have celebrated.
There was a time when I'd have read this and simply multiplied my age by five and given the money. There may even have been a fleeting hint of disgruntlement at being 'punished' for living longer. But then there was a time when I thought that fifty was somehow significant in a negative way, that it signalled the end of 'youth' and moved me officially into "young old age". And then there was the moment when I questioned the likelihood of seeing 48, though it was only around three months away, and fifty seemed a near impossible dream. I recently said to someone that my thinking about age had undergone a paradigm shift once the taken-for-granted-ness of another birthday had been shattered. It's not that I expect anything bad to happen, just the knowledge that life is fragile. Yesterday I read the news that Bernadette Nolan is now nearing the end of her life, as secondary breast cancer has spread throughout her body... her diagnosis, a few months earlier than mine, was not the same, and I don't draw too many comparisons, but is serves as a reminder of how precious life is, and how easily it is lost.
Were I to die tomorrow, I would have lived longer, and enjoyed more of the earth's riches and wonder than the majority of people in the world's poorest nations - that's the thought I take from today's challenge.
I will give 5p for every birthday to 47 - and 10p for each one since, because they are, and always will be, a bonus.
47 x 5p = £2.35
3 x 10p = 30p
Total = £2.65
Today - £2.65
Total - £42.70, seven prayers, some thoughts and one e-petition signed