Friday, April 23, 2010

Should St Aidan be new patron saint of UK?

Today is Saint George's Day and I'm reminded of leading theologian Ian Bradley's suggestion that St Aidan would make a better patron saint of the UK than St Goerge. What are your thoughts? Here are some of his reasons:

"St George had nothing to do with Britain and his legend was brought back here with the Crusades. St Andrew similarly had no links with Scotland and St Patrick was born in Scotland or England and put into slavery by the Irish. On the other hand, St Aidan unites three of the countries by having lived there and is, I believe, a better symbol for Britishness.

"Aidan was the sort of hybrid Briton that sums up the overlapping spiritual identities of Britain.

"He also makes a good patron saint of Britain because of his character. He was particularly humble and believed in talking directly to people. When he was given a horse by King Oswald of Northumbria, he immediately gave it away because he was worried that he would not be able to communicate properly.

"He was also not shy of reprimanding the mighty and powerful about their failings. He saw it as part of his job to remind secular rulers not to get above themselves.... he had a sense of openness and diversity for his time that I think makes him a good candidate as the patron saint of Britain."

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Ashes to ashes

 The Celts were great storytellers and poets. We need our contemporary storytellers to help us understand the times. 
Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy, has written a poem called 'Silver Linings' inspired by the volcanic eruption in Iceland.
You an hear Carol reading this poem by clicking on the link 
Five miles up the hush and shush of ash,
Yet the sky is as clean as a white slate -
I could write my childhood there.
Selfish to sit in this garden, listening to the past
(A gentleman bee wooing its flower, a lawnmower)
When the grounded planes mean ruined plans,
Holidays on hold, sore absences at weddings, funerals ... wingless commerce.
But Britain's birds sing in this spring
From Inverness to Liverpool, from Crieff to Cardiff,
Oxford, Londontown, Land's End to John O' Groats.
The music's silent summons,
That Shakespeare heard and Edward Thomas and, briefly, us.

Carol Ann Duffy

Sunday, April 4, 2010

He is risen!

Today on this Easter Sunday, and after a wonderful week of fasting from Internet communication, I want to share with you a very personal message that I've written as love poem to God:

Stone upon stone
upon river 
upon stream
my Lover is calling
He is beckoning to me.
A love consummated on a cross
and sealed in a tomb.
we rise to new life
                                  Bride and Bridegroom.
                                   (Liz Babbs)