3 March 2023 - CITW
2 March 2023 A Candle in the Window Peter Millar
The peace of the earth be with you,
the peace of the heavens too;
the peace of the rivers be with you,
the peace of the oceans too.
Deep peace falling over you;
God’s peace growing in you
Guatemalan text translated Christine Carson
We are in the universe, and the universe is in us.
Words by professor Ilia Delio who is a Franciscan Sister of Washington, DC and American theologian specializing in the area of science and religion, with interests in evolution, physics and neuroscience and the import of these for theology.
Do all the good you can,
by all the means you can,
in all the ways you can,
in all the places you can,
to all the people you can,
as long as ever you can.
God give us rain when we expect sun.
Give us music when we expect trouble.
Give us tears when we expect breakfast.
Give us dreams when we expect a storm.
Give us a stray dog when we expect congratulations.
God, play with us, turn us sideways and around.
Michael Lunig of Australia
Every moment can be the small door through which the messiah can enter.
Because Jesus himself has passed through the test of suffering,
he is able to help those who are in the midst of their test.
God keeps faith and will not let you be tested beyond your powers.
1 Corinthians 10:13
As the dear pants for streams of water so my soul pants for you O God. Psalm 42
A country diary:
Recently a friend said to me that it is a while since we had a nature reflection in the Candle in the Window, so here is a beautiful one from Start Bay in Devon in the UK written by Tom Allan. I hope it will calm your soul amidst our global uncertainties.
The sun has turned the bay indigo, and in this hazel hedgerow above the sea, you can almost hear the sap rising. The first buds are forming, and the catkins send puffs of lime green pollen into the air as I brush through the branches in search of hazel to cut.
English thatching is unimaginable without the hazel tree. Its wood is used to make spars – pointed staple-like fixings that hold the wheat or reed in place. For the last two decades, spars have mostly been imported from Poland, due not to a lack of English hazel, but to cheaper Polish labour costs.
Though there is a long thatching tradition in Poland, spars have never been used there, so Polish workers had first to be trained in spar-making. Meanwhile, in England, the skill has waned, as thatchers like me have become reliant on ready-made imports.
This winter the supply of Polish spars temporarily dried up, as a result of shortage of both labour and materials in Poland. And so English thatchers, suddenly sparless, have had to sharpen our billhooks and head once again for the woods.
At least, most of us have. I have been fortunate enough to be kept in spars by the retired master thatcher Alan Prince, who taught me for the first year of my apprenticeship. Being cut in the winter when the sap is down, the spars he has been making will be more durable than those from summer-cut hazel.
I push my way through the hedge in search of straight stems for a roof I am repairing up the road. I will use them to make not spars but liggers, rods of split wood that hold the wheat of the ridge in place. For a fiddly porch above the front door, I need the liggers to be as supple as possible, so will bend the hazel in place today, when the wood is greenest.
The sun filters through the bare branches, and the first bumblebees bump through the hart’s-tongue ferns at my feet, drowsy in the warming air. I find the first straight stem, unfold my pocket saw and begin to cut. Apart from anything else, there is something satisfying about gathering materials with your own hands.
God has lit up some lamps in my heart that nothing can put out.
Old Indian saying