Hamza and Strictly:
Hamza Yassin and Jowita had a severe effect on Motsi Mabuse. She was quivering with emotion. She gushes expertly most times and flooded over on this occasion. I expect everyone knows what I am writing about. It is obvious. It is the talk of the whole church! Hamza is a camera man and a presenter on Wildlife. He came from the Sudan. His family story is quite elaborate and very lovely. Hamza is a big man with big hair and very light feet. He seems to be a gentleman and very warm. It is his dancing that has caught the wonder of many. On Strictly Come Dancing (Saturdays on BBC1). I know little about music. I know nothing about dancing. My own dancing career never got started. But I did see Hamza and Jowita do an African routine on Saturday last. It was brilliant. We were told the background story of the family. It was moving. And moreover – his movement was magnificent. The whole saga of these participants dancing to such a high standard is extraordinary. Is there any limit to what is possible, if we are bold enough to try? Surely the business of the God-story is to reach out; to stretch; to dream big; to be prospectors; to exercise the muscles of the mind and imagination; to dance to the music of the heavens. I recall and repeat what Stephen Hawking said: “Your God is too small.” That often seems the case. Thank you Hamza.
The Light We Carry:
Michelle Obama has written another book. ‘The Light We Carry.’ She is very practical. She tells the story of her inadequacies as a parent. How she brought her mother with her to The White House. She knew that this woman would be simple, direct and ordinary. That she would tolerate no nonsense. That the glamour of the White House life would have no place in the life of the children. That normality would endure. The grandmother did the proper mothering! Michelle still felt unsure. She is very clear that Barack and herself weren’t sufficient or capable. She felt that the Presidency was going to get in the way of the usual family life. She emerges after those eight years and wonders if somehow the children came through it without too much damage. She also writes of Barack. Neither of them felt that they had to be everything for each other. She would never dare to place such a burden on him or let his expectations dump that demand on her. Life is much too big; too expansive; too mysterious for that. That gnaw at the core of the mystery of each human has to be accepted and respected. Life is always an ‘unfinished symphony’. She has written well with such truthfulness and deep dredging into the depths of the ordinary. (The Obamas stand out with such dignity compared to the bombast of Trump).
Pádraig Harrington won again. The Black Ferns beat the Red Roses at Eden Park. That early red card did the damage. England won T20 World Cup with young Curran being the player of the tournament and Stokes hitting the final balls. Eoin Morgan from Rush has set the standard for this team. If I remember correctly – Ireland beat this English team along the way! Caoimhín Kelleher did it again. His personality clearly fills the goal and frightens the penalty takers. Rachael Blackmore was making news again. Cristiano Ronaldo was an ideal interviewee for Piers Morgan. It was sad that he could be so dismissive of Man United in the evening of his footballing days. He deserves better for his genius. The poetry of his game was let down.
The assault of the Eschaton or even rumours:
The end of the year. The end of life. The end of the day! Here it seems that it is funerals that have taken us over, in a dying church! This is the time when the frighteners are put on us in the Liturgies. It is so bad that it becomes almost amusing. And then to crown it all; we have Christ the King. The language of Royalty is so inappropriate. Everything we know of Christ, contradicts the notion of Kingship. It is possible that my republican attitudes overwhelms any attempt by me to grasp the royal notions. Majesty plus other crazy and unsuitable adjectives, are used to describe God and Kingdom and Kingship. We seem to use this language to demonstrate what He wasn’t. But then it does tell us of the past, and how the church evolved, entwined often with the political system. It was convenient and also accommodating.
Those rumours (continue)
The Preface (for once) speaks simply and forcibly: Dominion over all creation, that “he may present – an eternal and universal ‘kingdom’: a ‘kingdom’ of truth, life, holiness, grace, justice, love and peace.” What do we present? How does the God of Revelations speak to our Churches! I will end by linking to the beginning. ‘The end is nigh.’ The better meaning of this is surely – everything at this time of year, asks us to think of what is really important; what matters; who matters? The music of life. The dance of life. The song of love. The harmonies of friendship and communion. The beauty of goodness. The fidelity of people. The laughter of companionship. The sense that there is always more. That something bigger than ourselves, obtains. That we are forever stretching the muscles of faith. The end of life. The reason for living. The ambition of humanity. God is great. We are blessed.
Indi has her spake:
There must be parcels arriving from Amazon because she was blethering about Jeff Bezos on the phone last night. I hardly knew who Bezos was. Indi had heard that he gave Dolly Parton $100m for her charitable works. Young Indi wondered if she could come under those worthy causes. She likes getting parcels and is happy to receive them from anyone. Either Jeff or Dolly or anyone else for that matter. Madam Indi wanted her father to sing: ‘I will always love you’ and ‘Jolene.’ Where does that young one get such notions? Anyway. The daddy obliged.
When she had her fill of Dolly Parton, she got back to what she wanted in her parcels. She wanted purple everything. She wanted dreams and surprises in every parcel. She wanted books. She wanted a car that would take her up into the sky where she could see God. She wanted God to come out to play with her. She wondered if God would dance with her. Her mother kept telling her that God dances every day with her. She can walk. She can see. She can hear. She can smell. She can smile. Her mother then told her a line which went like this: ‘Keep smiling because life is a beautiful thing and there is so much to smile about.’ (Marilyn Monroe). Where do they get all this stuff?
Seamus Ahearne osa
15th November 2022.