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Showing posts from February, 2008

Blood, Baptism and Mermaids

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The path leads downhill through woods, to open park land with views over the sea. Turn right in front of the big house and you come to the village of Upper Sheringham. The church is dedicated to All Saints. It’s very beautiful, prayerful and welcoming. Visitors are invited to make themselves a drink. A kettle and all the other bits and pieces are left out on a table.

Outside the church a spring of bright water bubbles up from the depths of the earth,. It has been quenching thirsts since first humans passed this way. I wondered if the first Christians were baptised in this water. The walls that bound the springhead and the pool around it were built to celebrate the end of the Napoleonic Wars. An inscription reads “Peace 1814”. I imagined the water of baptism washing away the blood and grime of battle – the water and the blood! How the world needs that purification still!

Taking a little water on the tips of my right hand I blessed myself remembering my baptism. The words of the book R…

Holy Rood of Bromholme

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I parked on the promenade at Walcott and headed towards Mundesley. Gulls wheeled overhead while others stood at the tide line. Near the shoreline Sandeling ran about like clockwork toys on the sand and Turnstones, well, turned stones! In the bitter wind I thought of Mary. Her name in Hebrew Miryam is derived (some say) from the words Mar Yam, Bitter Sea. Bitter wind! Bitter sea! It seemed about right for a Lenten walk!
At the end of a line of bungalows a flight of steps led off the beach. If you come this way you can’t mistake it! There’s a red dog poo bin at the top! From there I followed the rutted track and crossed the main road. Ahead of me was the archway and ruined gatehouse of what had been Bromholme Priory – my destination! The wonder-working Holy Rood of Bromholme, to which pilgrims flocked, was said to be a piece of the True Cross. Found by St. Helena in Jerusalem, it had been brought to England after Constantinople fell to the Muslim armies. After the dissolution of …

A Walk in Norwich Cathedral

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When it’s cold, wet and dark before tea time how nice it would be to go for a walk inside. You can do it! A handy guide “A Walk Round Norwich Cathedral” is available from the Visitors Desk

As I wandered I stopped to look and wonder, think and pray. It’s not escapism! The Chapel of the Holy Innocents is dedicated to victims of persecution and cruelty in every age!At St. Luke’s Chapel, I contemplated the beautifully painted reredos thatre-tells the story ofChrist’s Passion. It was commissioned in 14th Century to celebrate the crushing of the Peasant’s Revolt by the soldier/bishop Henry Despencer. It’s said that Henry returned from his victory to celebrate Holy Communion his hands still red with the blood!

At the Royal Norfolk Regiment’s Chapel I looked at the Book of Remembrance. The 1st Royal Anglian’s who carry the regiment’s tradition today are fresh back from Afghanistan and not unscathed.I remembered the dead, the grieving, the injured and families! Finally, sitting in the Bauchun Ch…