Yesterday we held a Parish retreat day, on the feast day of Julian of Norwich. In the last year, in the Covid-19 year, there has been a resurgence of interest in Julian. Julian was one of the leading women in English writing, in theology, and also in spiritual and pastoral care of a community in chaos.
Some time ago I found myself in southern Thessaly on my way to visit the Monasteries of Meteora – those remarkable monasteries that have settled themselves into the tops of spectacular rocks that soar to the heavens.
The Easter season seems to demand some mental gymnastics from us. We have a mixture of feelings I think as we embrace the mystery of the resurrected Christ. Especially when we get to the nuts and bolts readings of last week and this.
Our community has been busy since Palm Sunday, setting up the labyrinth, washing hands on Maundy Thursday, and gathering on Good Friday, celebrating Holy Saturday at sunset culminating with Easter Day.
Any writer of novels or scripts for film will tell you how important endings are. And we the readers or viewers would agree. In the old days of one episode a week TV the ending had to make you want to come back for more next week.
Today we enter the second day of our three day Passion ritual. Last night after ritual of washing and stripping church of decoration we left in silence into the night - into the darkness of Judas’ betrayal.
1 April 2021 Maundy Thursday
In this season ripe with ritual action the scriptures we read are likely familiar to us. Heard or read over and again we can be lulled by their familiarity. Then sometimes something new, something you’ve not noticed before pops.
Here we are in this religious space, this holy set apart place of St Matthew-in-the City. If we’d been able to keep to the plans made for Lent we’d be talking about art in the form of icons after church today.