By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. These ensure the smooth running of our services. Learn more.

A Skinny Fairtrade Latte in the Food Court of Life - Page 5

  • A Poem for Advent 1

    Whilst researching candle liturgies, I came across a series of 'poems' by Katherine Hawker at www.liturgyoutside.net

    Here's the one for the Candle of Hope

    hope in the bleak midwinter

    like a seed
    buried deep within the earth;
    covered by layers,
    disappointment, struggle, pain;
    buried yet stretching,
    growing and becoming.
    like a seed
    becoming new life.
    we light a candle for hope.


  • Angel Advent - Day 3

    St Michael defeating the devil at Coventry Cathedral.

    I was pretty young the first time we visited Coventry Cathedral, catching the train from Northampton, visiting the ruins of the old cathedral, climbing the tower (I think it cost 10p each) and then marvelling at the stained glass in the new cathedral.

    Since then, I've visited the cathedral numerous times, twice to attend anglican ordinations, and on the day I bought my red duffle coat, indeed, the latter was secondary to the former, as the cathedral and its precints are a place where I can find space to be still amidst the swirl of life.

    Like Dresden, a city devastated by the effects of war.  Like Dresden, a city where hope defied evil.  Unsurprisingly, there is a special relationship between these two cities and the Cross of Nails is a sahred symbol of hope.

    Not a prayer of my own today, but rather the Coventry Liturgy of reconiliation - an invitation from the angels who guard Coventry and Dresden to a more peaceful life...


    All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

    The hatred which divides nation from nation, race from race, class from class, FATHER FORGIVE.

    The covetous desires of people and nations to possess what is not their own, FATHER FORGIVE.

    The greed which exploits the work of human hands and lays waste the earth, FATHER FORGIVE.

    Our envy of welfare and happiness of others, FATHER FORGIVE.

    Our indifference to the plight of imprisoned, the homeless, the refugee, FATHER FORGIVE.

    The lust which dishonours the bodie sof men, women and children, FATHER FORGIVE.

    The pride which leads us to trustin ourselves and not in God, FATHER FORGIVE.

    Be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

  • Angel Advent - Day 2

    When I was doing a web search for 'angels in art' this photograph appeared on a website purporting to share the most iconic images.  I absolutely love it, even though it's anything but a classic angel portrayal.  Indeed, I have been unable to find out anything about the statue, other than the fact that it is overlooking the bombed out city of Dresden.

    The left hand, which apprears damaged, reaches out towards the ruins, guiding the viewer's eye to the devastation below.  It seems as if the angel (let's accept that it is, despite the absence of wings) stands sentinel over this broken place, and yearns to show the horror to anyone who will allow themself to look.

    The face is striking too - undamaged, hair perfectly coiffured, lips slightly parted, eyes focussed on the city below... as if to say, this is my city, that I love. 

    Maybe the hand reaches out not merely to draw the eye city-wards but as a gesture of hope, the upturned palm suggesting that the city will rise from its ashes, will live again.

    I am reminded of two things:

    In the gospels, Jesus stood on a hill outside Jerusalem and, wept because he loved it so much.

    It also reminds me of the poem 'The Prophet's Speech' by Rev Dr Doug Gay

    Lamenting over what is lost, dreaming of will be... this is the task of the prophet, and the message of the angels.

    God who watches over this weary world,

    Where, as the carol expresses so perfectly

    "beneath the angel strains have rolled

    Two thousand years of wrong"

    We know you must weep over the wanton destruction

    Inhumanity, greed, despair

    Yet, in unending love you reach out your hand -

    Scarred by the nails of crucifixion -

    To lead us onwards in hope.