David Winter reflects on the centenary of the
First World War
John Wall: I WENT to a beer festival a little
while ago. Now I'm more of a G&T or Pinot Grigio type of cleric
generally, but I loved it. I was there helping out on a stall for
the Bevy, the pub/hub/café we've been trying to reopen in
Moulsecoomb, closed some three years ago by the police because of
drugs and violence.
Robert Mackley: BITTERSWEET is an over-used
word. It is the only one that will do, however, to summarise my
experience of the past two weeks or so.
Sister Rosemary: I HAVE been a churchgoer
all my life, but I have recently experienced a form of liturgy
previously unknown to me: a pet service. The Rector's two worries
proved unfounded: the weather was fine, but not oppressively hot;
so we could comfortably be outdoors; and no member of the
congregation ate any other.
Jonathan Boardman: WHAT to serve the Archbishop
of Canterbury for lunch? It is a question that calls to mind Lady
Ramsey's complaint to Victor Stock after the publication of some of
his memoirs: "Victor, how could you say it? I never served soup at
John Pridmore: IT IS 2014, and we cannot
but remember. Each of us will be observing the centenary of the
outbreak of the First World War in his or her own way. I dwell on a
diary, the tiny 1916 Boy Scouts Diary that, 16
years ago, I picked up from a stall at a Salvation Army fête.
Diary: ALONG comes the First World War
again, so to speak, and on my desk appears a little something from
the Scripture Gift Mission, which now calls itself SGM
Diary: "WELL, I've been under the doctor
again with my legs." That was the answer of the woman in front of
me in the supermarket queue to her friend's question, "How are
you?" It made perfect sense to the friend, and to me, and to the
woman at the till.
Diary: WHY are Moulsecoomb clergy like
buses? You wait for one for two years, and then two come along at
Diary: I DO not know whether you can sense
it, emerging from the page as you read this diary column, but I'm a
bit stressed. It is not the usual things - late marriage-returns,
the EU email mountain, or contemplating the diocesan Mission
Statement - no, it's because of a sermon.
Diary: Is Britain a Christian country?
David Cameron's assertion was predictably followed by howls of
agreement or dissent. It fell to the dependably rational, though
not headline-friendly, Lord Williams of Oystermouth to make the
obviously true reply: "It depends what you mean by. . ."