Epiphany celebrated at the bandstand

We met this morning mindful of those who could not join us for differing reasons but grateful to be back after what seemed a prolonged absence.

Julie led us with the following words, linked to Archbishop Desmond Tutu:

Here is a man who embodied the seemingly contradictory qualities we must bring even to the hardest and most heartbreaking of circumstances. The healing depths of attention and compassion that he was able to bring to the horrific suffering of his country, in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, were made possible yes by wisdom, yes by courage, yes by brilliance — but also, by a wicked sense of humour and an alertness to the exhilaration — “thefun” — that can be wrested amidst the hardest of struggles.

I sometimes forget that I was created for Joy. My mind is too busy. My Heart is too heavy for me to rememberthat I have beencalled to dancethe Sacred dance of life. I was created to smile To Love To be lifted up And to lift others up. O’ Sacred One Untangle my feetfrom all that ensnares. Free my soul. That we might Danceand that our dancing might be contagious.~Hafiz

Lord in all and every occasion fill us with your love ,set our heart onfire, fill us with your Joy, and humour, and with a desire dance intoand through all that this world brings to us

Then it was time for us to burn our prayers from last year and attach new ones for the year ahead to the shepherd’s crook- safe in our Good Shepherd’s care. This year we added 3key words on the back of the labels that summed up our concerns / hopes for the year ahead.

Fiona shared a blessing, that quite wonderfully echoed the theme of Julie’s contribution:

“May today there be peace within.
May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be.
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith.
May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.
May you be content knowing you are a child of God.
Let this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.
It is there for each and every one of us.”

The we went for coffee together and shared bread and wine – only it was chocolate and wine in the end (!) to words written by Steve:

E – PIF – FAN – Y

those flowers need to go

the tat taken down

the lights packed away

a hard journey awaits – exile – the ray-al-lit-tay will not be denied.

E – PIF – FAN – Y

Rev-a-lay-shon – for which we yearn, seek after, clutch at, mindfully meditate for is…

quixotic, capricious, not to be managed, ordered up, down-loaded, owned or controlled

that twin sense of knowing and being known

of existing between the here and the there, the now and the somehow else

that liminal third-space

of being cradled awesomely – hay-zel-nut-ted

the veil rent asunder just for a moment.

Old wise women and old wise men wait and wait and journey and defiantly hope that the ray-al-lit-tay is merely my-as-mat-tic

a pea-souper

an atmosphere that obscures

a heavy corrupting vapour which will not endure

that dark glass which needs to be seen through.

Simeon and Anna on an ordinary transformed day – “this child shall be a light, a redemption for Jerusalem and all humankind. This is the child-Christ, the Christ-child whose kingdom shall not end.”

And so to bread – an ordinary fare transformed

“the body res-ur-rek-ted”

and to wine – standard plonk newly wine-skinned

“the wine of res-ur-rek-shon”

So companioned together, we wait and journey and defiantly hope. AMEN