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  • Count Your Blessings: Day 44


    Worldwide, around 215 million children work, many full-time.

    Give 10p for each child in your family who has time to play.

    OK, This week I am having an every increasing sense of deja vue - each time I read the challenge, I think "I've done that one already, haven't I?".  Oh dear, am I turning into Theresa of Avila with an amazing forgetory?  Or can I just blame it on long-term chemo-brain?!  A not terribly thorough back track through posts, and a google search suggest that I haven't already done this one, so either I am becoming prescient or losing the plot totally (or both!!).  Maybe I need a bit more time to play myself?!

    Anyhow, children in my family with time to play - that'd be all the under eighteens, so three nieces, two nephews plus one great niece... making a total of six.

    My pledge

    Today - 60p

    Total - Total - £43.80, eight prayers, some thoughts and one e-petition signed

  • Wednesday of Holy Week

    Today's lunchtime reflection moved us on again in Luke, with extracts from Luke 21 and the heading 'Signs of the Times'.  Another well attended gathering and some thoughtful and thought provoking reflections.

    On the grounds that I was exhausted, I ducked out of the evening service tonight, spending time instead preparing various bits of props for Sunday.  Let's just say cat food trays, tissues, barbecue skewers and egg shells (sterilised) will feature in some way on Sunday morning.  Now I'm just waiting for my glass tealight holders to finish being dish-washed and I'll be as ready as I'll ever be for tomorrow's Tenebrae.

    An early night is called for methinks!

  • Holy Humour?

    OK, so I decided to have a nice spring feel to Easter Sunday, and have chosen "come sing of the springtime" as one of our hymns... and there's snow falling fast in Glasgow at the moment.  How will we sing the sing the line that says "the snow is all melted..." with a straight face?!

    Then I was re-reading the passage I've chosen (Luke's resurrection story) with its mention of two men in white/shining clothes...

    two popes.jpg

    Half way through Holy Week and I'm feeling the exertion (as ever) and (as every year) wondering how Jesus and his disciples got through it all... small wonder the poor disciples feel asleep on the Thursday evening... I have a feeling after our Tenebrae tomorrow I'll be joining them!!

  • Count Yopur Blessings: Day 43


    Child marriage often leads to early childbirth, the leading killer of adolescent girls in Africa.

    Pray for safety for all the young girls in the world who will give birth today.



    Poor people sometimes have to spend most of their money on food. If food gets more expensive, they can’t afford to buy more and might have to go hungry. If you usually buy snacks as a treat, why not buy something smaller today and give the change to Christian Aid?

    One of the things that shocked and horried me as I read some social media responses to the recent Comic relief appeal, with its footage from Africa, was that some people in the UK still feel at liberty to say "they should stopped foom breeding".  Such comments riase my blood temeprature and pressure more than somewhat.  It is undoubtedly the case that access to safe, reliable contraception has the potential to save lives.  But the correlation between access to safe reliable contraception and reduced numbers of young women becoming pregnant is far from proven, as statisitcs for the UK illustrate all too plainly.

    I don't have the time or energy to formulate a proper reflection on this, but it seems to me that physical and emotional poverty are both factors that lead to young women becoming mothers at a very young age, irrespective of where in the world they live.  Whilst teenage mothers in the UK have access to world class care, not all access it, and tragedies will occur.  I don't think it's even as simple as questions of 'choice'.  Just self-perpetuating cycles of struggle and vulnerability.

    Jesus, son of Mary

    A young mother, not yet wed,

    You know fine well how risky it is for a pubescent girl to carry a child

    You know the shrieks of pain and the mess of blood and water that accompany childbirth beyond our sterile western world

    You know the risk of infection to mother and child as she delivers in poverty, without access to clean water or warm blankets, never mind medical care

    You know the young womwn who, today, in Africa, in Britain, and throughout the world, who will this day enter the travail of childbirth...

    You know that by nightfall some will be enjoying motherhood, while others, at best, cling desperately to life...

    Jesus, son of Mary, son of God, have mercy on them.


    My pledge

    Today - one prayer

    Total - £43.20, eight prayers, some thoughts and one e-petition signed

  • Tuesday of Holy Week

    Two more excellent and thoughtful reflections today.

    At lunchtime, centring on Luke 20:19 - 40, with the title "Death and Taxes" we were invited to ponder rednering unto Caesar, even when we are not entriely sure that Caesar deserves our respect never mind our rendering.

    And in the evning, continuing with John 12, and verses 20-36, we heard of the amazing discovery that seeds from the arctic lupin could germinate after around 10,000 years lodged in permafrost, as a way in to pondering the mystery of the ear of wheat that has to die to achieve its potential and the miracle and mystery of Christ's anticipated resurrection.  Thank you St J R.