Happy New Year! – What a fabulously spectacular opening to 2016 we’ve just seen on TV – at and around the Millennium Wheel in London. I can’t remember ever being so overwhelmed by fountain upon fountain of uproarious festal delight-in-light – though, it must be said – the display in our own little village was quite a treat as well.
Festivals of Light are such glorious ways to celebrate our hope for today and for every tomorrow – all the way from the lighting of individual candles to which HM the Queen referred on Christmas Day, to the great cities around our world joyfully and hopefully welcoming the new.
Oh, the London fireworks brought tears to our eyes – and never more so than upon our hearing the much-loved voice of dear Cilla Black – herself now embracing an expansive new new – echoing across the Thames. (The whole treat’s here, courtesy of the BBC, at YouTube)
Something tells me, something’s gonna happen tonight …
Yes: may it be peace.
Fifty years after Nostra aetate – In our time – redefined the Roman Catholic Church’s relations with Judaism a BBC headline today reads Catholics should not try to convert Jews, Vatican says – as it reports the release of a new document. Judaism, says the Commission for Religious Relations with Jews, “is not to be considered simply as another religion; the Jews are instead our elder brothers”. A good read, especially since I’ve spent some time over the past few days reflecting a bit on native American Joy Harjo’s marvellous Eagle Poem – which one might describe as wonderfully catholic – universal – with a small c. We are evolving. We are. When we know it and when we don’t. Whether or not we’re thankful for it, we are evolving!
To pray you open your whole self
To sky, to earth, to sun, to moon
To one whole voice that is you.
And know there is more
That you can’t see, can’t hear;
Can’t know except in moments
Steadily growing, and in languages
That aren’t always sound but other
Circles of motion.
Like eagle that Sunday morning
Over Salt River. Circled in blue sky
In wind, swept our hearts clean
With sacred wings.
We see you, see ourselves and know
That we must take the utmost care
And kindness in all things.
Breathe in, knowing we are made of
All this, and breathe, knowing
We are truly blessed because we
Were born, and die soon within a
True circle of motion,
Like eagle rounding out the morning
We pray that it will be done
In Mad Love and War