Showing posts from June, 2015

St.Ninian, Whithorn and the Ruthwell Cross

When Ted (Ted Heasley RIP) and I visited the Isle of Whithorn back in 2000 AD the Cairn of Witness was new. We liked the idea but we hadn't known about it, otherwise we would have brought a piece of East Anglian flint to place on the pile!
In 20015 it was still on my to do list.

So last month when I returned, a piece of Norfolk flint was added and I had a minute or two remembering Ted.

Back then we were on our way to Headford in County Galway  - a pilgrimage made in honour of St. Fursey - it all seemed cut and dried. But now scholars find it hard to agree on where St. Fursey had his monastic formation. It may have been just a short hop across the Irish Sea in Ulster.

Ted and I had called in at Whithorn where we visited the site of St. Ninian's , Candida Casa (White Shining perhaps? House ) the pilgrimage chapel at the Isle of Whithorn and Ninian's Cave. In my mind it had been a detour but now I see differently.

Most of what we know about Ninian is from the Ven. Bede who p…

The Parable of the Mustard Seed

I particularly like this photo taken in the Spring of 2008 in Cyprus. It illustrates the Parable of the Mustard Seed (Mark 4.31) and the Allegory of the Vine (John 15). The brilliant yellow of the mustard flower is every where in the spring -  on field edges, in gardens, on little bits of waste land in Cyprus and Galilee.
The mustard seed does not grow into a great tree where the birds of the tree make their nests. Everyone knows that! 
It is a pernicious weed that spreads everywhere! Look in the photo at the yellow all around the edge of the vineyard where the vines are pruned and ready!  A different sort of power and a different sort of kingdom to those of Egypt or Assyria  (See Ezekiel 17.22 ff and 36.66ff)

St. Cuthbert - Something understood

It was too windy to go out to the Farne Islands on Wednesday last week so I walked from Bamburgh around the coast to Budle Bay then back by way of the Spindle Stone. I could not help looking back at the castle and realising how close it was to the Inner Farnes . It was then I got cross with Cuthbert! He had his hermitage on the Inner Farnes. The king lived at Bamburgh Castle. It is one thing feeling you have a vocation to be a hermit. Its another to go grand standing about it. "Look at me I'm a holy hermit living on next to nothing in the middle of the sea?"
By the time I'd walked the circuit I'd come to terms with what he had done. I realised I thought nothing in mounting the steps of a pulpit and preaching in the name of Father, Son  and Holy Spirit. Cuthbert's  enacted example was far more costly and communicated deep and uncomfortable truths that are still resonate.
Life is precarious, it mattered little if you were a fighting king or a hermit. Oswiu had…

Caring for God's Acre Conference

Brilliant Day

Inspirational Speakers

Great Workshops

Great Partnership between
Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Caring for God's Acre Diocese of Norwich
Thoughtful kind and intelligent chairing Thanks you Canon Dr. Jeremy Haselock

Ace food Thank you Luke (the Griddler) Blackburn
Church and Churchyard Open and welcoming                                           Thanks churchwardens Richard and Sylvia  and Horstead PCC

Last but not leastLets hear it for the washers up
Thanks Margaret, Sue, Jacqueline and Bridget