You are here18th May 2020

18th May 2020

By Ian Cardinal - Posted on 18 May 2020

Dear friends


I am sure that I was not the only viewer of last weeks’ Gardeners World to be saddened by Monty Don's obvious distress as he told us that his beloved dog and friend of 14 years, Nigel, had died earlier in the week. (I had bought Mary Monty’s book: Nigel: My family and other dogs, Two Roads Books, 2016, about a tenner I think), for Christmas.

Even though this loved one of his was a pet, his anguish seem to be such an relevant example of what so many people are unfortunately experience currently, because of corona virus, that I was deeply moved.

The next day whilst doing a little more work towards completing my Living Discipleship course, this reference to some words of St Paul (1 Thessalonians chapter 4 verse 13) leapt off the page to comfort me. The course writer, Dr Lindsey Hall, who has produced special modules relating to coping with  Covid 19, expands on this Paulian theme acknowledging our sadness when a loved one dies, where he says: "We do not mourn as those who have no hope (and it continues: V14. We believe that though Jesus rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have [already] fallen asleep). Dr Hall found this a really helpful way of saying that; Yes, of course we do and must mourn, but we do so as people who have hope in the promises of Jesus Christ.

I found this a very comforting train of thought, for like so many people, I am naturally anxious and afraid for my loved ones, 3 of whom have already have the virus, and I hope it can also comfort you, but I leave you with a thought, not from a Bible passage, or a modern day theologian, but from a Biggles book I read as a child. It is a passage that has stuck with me all my life. One of the team was in France, and expressed his regret to his French guide, concerning the crosses of Lorraine by the roadside marking where members of the World War II resistance had fallen. This companion told him; "But Monsieur, without their death, how could we have known of their courage".

My thought, based on St Paul, is that without our sadness and mourning, how could we show our love for those we have lost?

In Hope and in Faith,