Our little union of nations continues her sojourn through the years into an uncertain future as we struggle once more with what it is to be, not a part of, but apart from Europe, tracing and retracing the path of our history. For many folk the journey of our lives too can be one of changed directions and retraced steps.
And I am reminded again, as we approach the height of the holiday season, of the journeys our forebears once made from all across the nation states and nations of Europe, lesser or greater, folk of high rank or low, yet common to a deeper path of unity and loyalty in faith. So they shared their journeys along the Way under the Stars following the direction of the heavens even to the ends of the earth, across from all points East to farthest West till at Cape Finisterre, the pilgrim, gazed westward across the Atlantic to be reminded by the stars of the night sky in the pointing finger of the Milky Way, of the journey we all ultimately share when at the end of the journey of our lives we find our place amidst the heavens. At the drama of this revelation the pilgrim was bounden to return across the same Europe they had trod before back again to their own lands as the fields of their labours called them home. Such journeys offered the pilgrim transformative Holy days, strength, hope, and vision for whatever uncertainties their futures would face, for they had experienced a trial common to all pilgrims met along the Way, through which they could recognise their greater sharing together in this pilgrimage of life.
Still today is this same pilgrimage made, open to those of faith or none, the pilgrimage itself predating discipleship in the Way of Christ. Among the parishes of Bansfield Benefice, beginning with All Saints' Wickhambrook we will be establishing little echoes of this journey in our churchyards. And at the beginning of Advent this year, All Saints' Church will launch this "Way of Prayer", or "Labyrinth", with an afternoon workshop and an evening screening of the Emilio Estevez film The Way, featuring Martin Sheen. The Way was a lifetime's ambition for Father and Son team Estevez and Sheen, as they sought to evoke in film something of this great journey across Europe to Santiago de Compostela and beyond.
Our screening day will be open to all, whether of faith or not and I will include more details in future newsletters. But for now I pray you all may experience in your holidays, times to offer strength hope and vision for the journey of our days ahead.
Yours in Christ
Rev'd Brin Singleton