Advent 1 – 28th November 2010

At the forefront of my mind, as I write today is the sad plight of a group of miners, their families and friends, in New Zealand.

By the time you read this I am pretty sure that we will have word that none, bar the two who escaped in the first hours, have survived. The blast was too severe and the gasses within the tunnels too toxic, for anyone to survive.

I can’t begin to assume I understand the grief and pain suffered by all who have awaited news on husbands, fathers, sons, brothers and friends. How tragic that there are unborn children who will never know their father.

I think the individual situation, which touched me most, was the story of the 17-year-old miner who set off for his 1st day at work, never to return.

I wonder, if anyone involved had known that these men would breath their last that day… would words and actions in the preceding days have been different?

That is really what our readings are asking us to consider this week. Jesus is asked about the signs of his time and about the coming of the “son of man on the clouds of heaven.” And his answer is “no one knows… but only the father.”

None of us knows when we will be called home to meet with our Lord and maker. The question we need to ask is “Are we ready?” and, if not “what do we need to do in order to be ready?”

These are serious questions, which require some time for reflection. They also balance out a little of the madness of the “silly” season and help us to focus on the true meaning of the birth of Christ.

Love and Blessings

Reverend Shan