Sunday, November 28, 2010

Advent Sunday evening - musings

Advent Sunday has always been one of my favorite days of the year, marking a clear boundary between the folk-festivals of Autumn and the beginning of the Church's New Year. Pumpkins and straws are cleared away to support the prophet Isaiah's words: "Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths." Symbolically, and spiritually. And I have always enjoyed preaching on this day. Yet (without judgement on the soundness of my homily) I was, today, denied that pleasure by a group of noisy children. Now I love the noise of children in church. A cry, a laugh, a squeal - even at an inopportune moment of the liturgy - fills me with delight and blessing. But when such children are allowed to continue to noisily disrupt I surely have to draw a line. They continued to do so, and their parents (whom I do not know) did nothing, and I interrupted my sermon to invite the family to take the children out into the beautiful sunshine. Yet they did not respond. Eventually they did leave. During the Creed. Sad. Indicative of a certain modern parental attitude. This did mean that I had to preach my sermon three times today, as the original recorded soundtrack was ruined by the little urchins. Speaking to an empty church this afternoon was ... interesting.

Late this afternoon I visited the Falkowski farm for the last time this season. They close their stand today, and every year I visit and wish them well for the winter season. Today I was their last customer and bought the last two bunches of beet-roots before wishing them every blessing.

And in the face of all this wonderful reality I wonder about the Episcopal Church ...

No comments: