Some reflections on some of the news stories that have done the rounds over this last week or so…
|Jonathan Brady/ PA|
Kate dances with Paddington.
There have been a few stories about childbirth recently – the new breastfeeding emoji, a big phone-in on Radio 5 about the pain and trauma so many couples go through with the IVF process (especially if it is unsuccessful), adoption, and this one. It’s not really a story about childbirth, but (inevitably) every story about the Duchess of Cambridge will ultimately be about childbirth until next April and beyond!
I have heard many curmudgeonly commentators protesting that this is NOT NEWS! “Woman has baby – shock!” And I have to admit I have been one of them – I have even shouted it at the radio! Imagine! 🙂
But more sober reflection makes me more generous. Of course it is news – it is glorious, joyful news worth celebrating when hopes and dreams about new life and new possibilities and new futures come true. Soon you will be able to celebrate with the new breast feeding emoji right from your own phone! 🙂
Lord give us generous and open hearts which enable us truly to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep.
|TIZIANA FABI/ AFP/ GETTY IMAGES|
|Danish Siddiqui/ Reuters|
Diwali or Deepavali is the Hindu festival of lights celebrated every year in autumn in the northern hemisphere (also marked by Sikhs and Jains). Here, a girl plays with firecrackers in Mumbai!
It’s a festival of LIGHT – the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. Yet every year curmudgeonly Brits moan that local councils announce celebrations of Diwali or that schools include it in their calendar.
Lord, show us how to work in partnership with anyone who celebrates the victory of light of over darkness and longs for the victory of hope over despair. For you are the Light that came into the world – the Light that darkness cannot overcome.
|Paula Bronstein/ Getty Images|
O God, who art the unsearchable abyss of peace,
the ineffable sea of love, the fountain of blessings
and the bestower of affection,
who sendest peace to those that receive it;
Open to us this day the sea of thy love
and water us with plenteous streams
from the riches of thy grace
and from the most sweet springs of thy kindness.
Make us children of quietness and heirs of peace,
enkindle in us the fire of thy love;
sow in us thy fear;
strengthen our weakness by thy power;
bind us closely to thee and to each other
in our firm and indissoluble bond of unity: