I used to dread Remembrance Sunday. Not because of painful remembering - as I feel sure I've blipped before, the most I can recall is my mother listening on the radio and weeping for the memory of a friend who had died in WW2. No; it was the services held in church when I first became a Christian at the age of 28 and soon found myself singing in the choir of the church I still attend. I had to be there, but I felt uncomfortable - at the words, the music, God Save the Queen.
And now I find myself preaching on Remembrance Sunday. It made a huge difference that I'd visited the battlefields and the graves of the Somme and the Normandy beaches; gave me a visual memory with which to illustrate my theme. I'm not going to re-deliver it here; enough to say that history is a warning, not a justification for the vilification of The Other.
We had hymns with old tunes and wonderfully relevant new words and not a whisper of jingoism. It gave me hope that we're evolving, slowly.
The photo above shows the flowers and candles arranged by a wonderfully talented member of the congregation, and the extras are of the sunny grounds of our awkwardly but perfectly situated church, with the Firth of Clyde gleaming in the distance, and of the wreath being laid at our one War Grave from WW1.
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