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Day 14 of Atonement – and forgiveness

April 11, 2010

for we know not what we do…

This evening, Katie like a good wife took me to church – Southwark Cathedral, to be precise, for the Service of Light, conducted by a woman priest in the retro-choir, the oldest part, the medieval Church of St Mary Overie.

Candles are lit in the Lady Chapel with its reproduction of the Annunciation:

* Ave Maria, cheia de Gracia… (: as we say in my own funny Christian-Animist church of which we speak no further here – some things are sacred, inviolate and unspoken, even by inveterate bloggers – except to say that here in the Service of Light, in the most feminine part of the Cathedral, is about as close as you get to that in the Anglican church 😉

I blubbered a lot and strove to forgive my enemies – and forgave and let go and healed a whole lot more.  A cantor led us in the singing of simple invocatory phrases: ‘Lord Come Near, Come Near and Stay…’ interwoven with the Canon’s prayers. I sang along with my blubbery snotty nose.

Canon Jane related her short commentary on the reading: when Christ appears to the disciples and Thomas doubts. She speaks about the different times in the crucifixion story. When Judas leaves: it is night. The morning after it is morning, the glorious sunrise of the resurrection revealed directly to Mary Magdalene.

‘Now, it is evening, the hour of the lighting of the lamps… ‘

She says the message is that Christ is with us in all the parts of the day, in the dark as in the light. That the Genesis narrative is an expression of  our profound sense that so much in the world seems wrong, and that when we enter into Christ the world is repaired and restored and our lives restored. When she spoke of gratitude, I know I have been blessed – and open my heart and blub some more. Katie holds my hand.  We’re coming through all this together, and stronger together, seeing each other clearer, listening more.

And do you know, my pagan pals, after the service, I blew my nose and patiently bided my time whilst Canon Jane offered solace in broken Italian to a poor foreigner who was evidently stricken with a grief before which my petty concerns paled into nonentity.

And when he left, went and thanked the priest and received her blessing. When she asked me, I said: John and that I’d written the play that’s happening in the Cathedral. She said: The Mysteries? I said: yes, and I’m proud of them, but it’s also a humbling and a testing time. She said: Of course. Then she blessed me.  And in that blessing something else gave and opened and all was light and love and freedom.

So now, I do give thanks, even to them that do falsely declaim The Goose and her works until they turn blue in the face.

For here, of all places, might I whisper:

By The Grace of Our Lady Mary Overie, let them see…

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One comment

  1. […] … things are sacred, inviolate and unspoken, even by inveterate bloggers – except to say that here in the Service of Light, in the most feminine part of the Cathedral, is about as close as you get to that in the Anglican church … View full post on anglican – Google Blog Search […]



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