Sunday, 27 November 2011
Advent Sunday was nearly a wash out as I went to bed the night before feeling poorly. A poorly priest on the eve of a Sunday is a very bad thing. Next morning - that really difficult decision - do I struggle out of bed, feel worse and start the working week on the back foot (tricky as loads of important things brewing up this week) or be sensible, stay in bed, let other people use their gifts and learn the very difficult lesson of being dispensable...? A strange thing occurred liturgically at that point. I had a real Psalm 137 moment - 'How can we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?' i.e. the thought of missing Advent Sunday, the candles, the wreath, the purple, the Collect (give us grace to cast away the works of darkness') the singing ('O Come, O come, Emmanuel') was unbearable. I couldn't bear to be left out of the worshipping action, like those Israelites weeping by the rivers of Babylon. It 's the beginning of the church's year. I'm an Anglican priest. I have to be there! Being in church actually made me feel physically better. Never mind paracetamol, give me the first Sunday of Advent any day.