• - Waiting for Godot

    Dear Friends, This coming weekend sees the beginning of the season of Advent which in four weeks’ time will culminate in the celebration of Christmas itself. Traditionally it is a time for waiting and watching, for watching and waiting. These twin themes are taken up in Samuel Beckett’s almost impenetrable drama, ‘Waiting for Godot’. It is a work that defies any definitive interpretation. Even though Beckett was not an avowedly religious person, nevertheless the text is riddled with allusions to the Biblical text, and as the conversation between the two main characters – Vladimir and Estragon – unfolds, one can discern a number of themes central to a Christian understanding of the interplay between God, humanity and the world. One writer, attempting to sum up Beckett’s motivation in writing the play has said this… ‘…The hypothesised God who emerges from Beckett’s texts is one who is both cursed for his perverse absence and cursed for his surveillant presence. He is by turns dismissed, satirised or ignored, but he, and his tortured son, are never definitively discarded…’ (Bryden, M., Samuel Beckett and the Idea of God:). …When we come to contemplate the Incarnation, to think again concerning the ongoing significance of the birth, life, death & resurrection of Jesus, we find ourselves confronted by an understanding of the ongoing nature & purpose of God which causes us to have to deconstruct the god whom we have albeit unconsciously ‘created in our own image’ – whether ‘perversely’ absent, or ’surveillantly’ present – in order that we might find room within ourselves to be ‘remade’ in the image of Christ. During Advent we wait and we watch, we watch and we wait. He is coming. For too many of us, our preconceptions about God will cause us to fail to acknowledge Him. We too will dismiss, satirise and/or ignore Him. He will be in the world, but/and the world will not recognise Him. But then, the season of Advent is meant to encourage us to ‘locate’ the birth of Jesus within the wider purpose of God. It invites us to appreciate that our waiting and watching, our watching and waiting needs must take on an altogether higher, deeper, longer, wider perspective. Summed up for us in terms of the 2nd Advent, the 2nd Coming, the return of Christ. For many, Christians included, a suggestion seemingly too fantastic to ever be true as described. Anyway, we find ourselves somewhere between the 1st Coming, and the 2nd Coming. The real question for us is this. In the meantime, what are we to do? Well, Beckett hits the nail squarely on the head… ‘…Let us not waste our time in idle discourse! Let us do something, while we have the chance! It is not every day that we are needed…To all mankind they were addressed, those cries for help still ringing in our ears! But at this place, at this moment of time, all mankind is us, whether we like it or not. Let us make the most of it, before it is too late…’ (Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot) HAPPY ADVENT EVERYONE …

  • …Of course, it begs the question as to just who is deserving of ‘Celebrity’ status? …A unique persona made widely known to the public via media coverage, and whose life is publicly consumed as dramatic entertainment, and whose commercial brand is made profitable for those who exploit their popularity, and perhaps also for themselves…

  • - Armistice Day 2021

    …Any direct ‘living link’ with WW1 has long been broken. But there remain amongst us those who can recall Grandfathers, fathers, uncles; those who were ‘fortunate’ enough to have survived the conflict, returning home, having to readjust to civilian life. Invariably scarred for life – physically, mentally, emotionally, even spiritually – often to such an extent that the damage done proved irreparable…

  • - COP26

    How far are we prepared to go to ensure that we play our admittedly small part in the overall project. And we have to be mindful that while many of us are sufficiently well-off financially to be able to take the inevitable hit re prices etc, there will be some of us, and many others, who just won’t be able to afford to do what is being asked of them.

  • - A person’s mental health

    And it is worth reminding ourselves that people of faith – e.g., Christians – are not immune from the ravages of struggling as far as one’s Mental Health is concerned. It is often the case that extreme circumstances such as those forced on so many by the pandemic impact themselves spiritually, creating what might be termed a ‘crisis of faith’ …

  • - Waiting for Godot

    Dear Friends, This coming weekend sees the beginning of the season of Advent which in four weeks’ time will culminate in the celebration of Christmas itself. Traditionally it is a time for waiting and watching, for watching and waiting. These twin themes are taken up in Samuel Beckett’s almost impenetrable drama, ‘Waiting for Godot’. It is a work that defies any definitive interpretation. Even though Beckett was not an avowedly religious person, nevertheless the text is riddled with allusions to the Biblical text, and as the conversation between the two main characters – Vladimir and Estragon – unfolds, one can discern a number of themes central to a Christian understanding of the interplay between God, humanity and the world. One writer, attempting to sum up Beckett’s motivation in writing the play has said this… ‘…The hypothesised God who emerges from Beckett’s texts is one who is both cursed for his perverse absence and cursed for his surveillant presence. He is by turns dismissed, satirised or ignored, but he, and his tortured son, are never definitively discarded…’ (Bryden, M., Samuel Beckett and the Idea of God:). …When we come to contemplate the Incarnation, to think again concerning the ongoing significance of the birth, life, death & resurrection of Jesus, we find ourselves confronted by an understanding of the ongoing nature & purpose of God which causes us to have to deconstruct the god whom we have albeit unconsciously ‘created in our own image’ – whether ‘perversely’ absent, or ’surveillantly’ present – in order that we might find room within ourselves to be ‘remade’ in the image of Christ. During Advent we wait and we watch, we watch and we wait. He is coming. For too many of us, our preconceptions about God will cause us to fail to acknowledge Him. We too will dismiss, satirise and/or ignore Him. He will be in the world, but/and the world will not recognise Him. But then, the season of Advent is meant to encourage us to ‘locate’ the birth of Jesus within the wider purpose of God. It invites us to appreciate that our waiting and watching, our watching and waiting needs must take on an altogether higher, deeper, longer, wider perspective. Summed up for us in terms of the 2nd Advent, the 2nd Coming, the return of Christ. For many, Christians included, a suggestion seemingly too fantastic to ever be true as described. Anyway, we find ourselves somewhere between the 1st Coming, and the 2nd Coming. The real question for us is this. In the meantime, what are we to do? Well, Beckett hits the nail squarely on the head… ‘…Let us not waste our time in idle discourse! Let us do something, while we have the chance! It is not every day that we are needed…To all mankind they were addressed, those cries for help still ringing in our ears! But at this place, at this moment of time, all mankind is us, whether we like it or not. Let us make the most of it, before it is too late…’ (Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot) HAPPY ADVENT EVERYONE …

  • …Of course, it begs the question as to just who is deserving of ‘Celebrity’ status? …A unique persona made widely known to the public via media coverage, and whose life is publicly consumed as dramatic entertainment, and whose commercial brand is made profitable for those who exploit their popularity, and perhaps also for themselves…

  • - Armistice Day 2021

    …Any direct ‘living link’ with WW1 has long been broken. But there remain amongst us those who can recall Grandfathers, fathers, uncles; those who were ‘fortunate’ enough to have survived the conflict, returning home, having to readjust to civilian life. Invariably scarred for life – physically, mentally, emotionally, even spiritually – often to such an extent that the damage done proved irreparable…

  • - COP26

    How far are we prepared to go to ensure that we play our admittedly small part in the overall project. And we have to be mindful that while many of us are sufficiently well-off financially to be able to take the inevitable hit re prices etc, there will be some of us, and many others, who just won’t be able to afford to do what is being asked of them.

  • - A person’s mental health

    And it is worth reminding ourselves that people of faith – e.g., Christians – are not immune from the ravages of struggling as far as one’s Mental Health is concerned. It is often the case that extreme circumstances such as those forced on so many by the pandemic impact themselves spiritually, creating what might be termed a ‘crisis of faith’ …

  • The tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell…

  • - No Time to Die

    … my favourite Bond was Roger Moore…Anyway, what do the following actors have in common – Jeffery Hunter, Jim Caviezel, Christian Bale, William Defoe, Robert Powell – they are among the many who have portrayed …

  • - They deserve to be heard

    Especially during times of a shortage of candidates. It is very tempting to be ‘less than rigorous’ in the selection process…It may be due to the inadequacy of the process of ministerial formation with insufficient attention being paid to a person’s personal, psychological profile…

  • - We need more of them

    Those folk who are always whispering in our ears, ‘you only notice us when we are not there.’ The present crises have turned the spotlight on HGV lorry drivers but there are a whole ‘army’ of people who are working ceaselessly to ensure the smooth running of society as far as the rest of us are concerned…

  • - Approaching Harvest

    That is why I feel able to make this appeal…’Giving’ as a way of saying ‘thank you’ is a straightforward expression of what is at the heart of the Christian Gospel. God loved the world so much that God gave His only begotten Son. Jesus gave His life, that we and others might live. ‘Our Heavenly Father’ knows how to give good gifts to us His children.’