It is early morning on the banks of Ireland’s wild river—the mighty Shannon. The rising sun is just beginning to light up the water. The earth is awakening.Continue reading “Still Listening with St Patrick”
Life is sometimes a roller-coaster of experiences and emotions. That’s how is was 2000 years ago and the implications of what happened then are still changing the world today.Continue reading “Not until the Third Day”
A lone sentry keeping watch from this Martello tower waits anxiously for news from across the English Channel. When it comes his heart sinks with dismay.. Continue reading “Dawn after the darkest hour”
All is still, and quiet as the early winter sun appears over the rooftops. The freshness of a new day is so welcome when the sun’s warmth is rising. Even in the cold a sunny day makes so much difference. A new day comes pristine, hopeful and full of possibilities. This is ‘day’s most sacred hour‘ – a daily gift of grace, Continue reading “A Winter Dawn”
Immensity cloistered in thy dear wombe,
Now leaves his welbelov’d imprisonment,
There he hath made himself to his intent
Weak enough, now into our world to come;
But Oh, for thee, for him, hath th’Inne no roome?
Yet lay him in this stall, and from the Orient,
Stars, and wisemen will travel to prevent
Th’effect of Herod’s jealous general doom;
Seest thou, my Soul, with thy faith’s eyes, how he
Which fills all place, yet none holds him, doth lie?
Was not his pity towards thee wondrous high,
That would have need to be pitied by thee?
Kiss him, and with him into Egypt goe,
With his kind mother, who partakes thy woe.
This old verse is part of the poet John Donne’s 7 verse poem ‘La Corona’ (The Crown) about the life of Christ from the Annunciation to the Ascension.
What Glorious ‘Impossibilities’!
The Maker is made , the One who is everywhere is ‘cloistered’ in a womb, the All powerful Creator comes in the weakness and vulnerability of a babe, the God of love, becomes an infant needing a mother’s loving care. We walk on holy ground here!
The line that has been ringing in my ears since hearing this poem read out aloud (as all poetry should be) is ‘Immensity cloistered in thy dear wombe’.
How wonderful that though there was ‘no room in the inn’, there was room in Mary’s womb—a place where Immensity could be ‘cloistered’ – staggering thought. We can all identify with this, since we have all come from a mother’s ‘womb’ – a place of security and warmth were life can begin. We can identify with Jesus as he identifies with us, not just from ‘the cradle to the grave’, as we sometimes say, but from the womb to the Resurrection – the whole of life.
Have a heart felt and Christ filled Christmas this year.