Life is a bit full-on this week because of a deluge of speaking engagements and my final working weekend in Croydon. So, there hasn’t been much time for blogging.
The work I have been doing in my study has been accompanied by the most hauntingly beautiful music that helps make sense of some of the contradictions of life, yet also makes me feel guilty for being moved by it.
Terezin/Theresienstadt is a collection of songs written by artists condemned ot the concentration camp north of Prague, most of whom were later deported to their death in Auschwitz. Anne Sofie von Otter was behind the project to record the songs, observing that out of the horrors and propaganda of this benighted place came not just death, but also an unquenchable beauty rooted in a hope that was not fantasy.
I am listening to this in the context of a visit by our Zimbabwean Link Bishop and his wife. In Zimbabwe the Anglican Church is being victimised by Mugabe and his fellow losers. Intimidation, brutality and corruption are rife – but the bishops continue to lead their people in resisting and in working for a better future for all Zimbabweans. They make my life look easy. Their experience also relativises mine: is ‘peaceful living’ the norm or the exception?
In this connection it is worth having a look at Charles Reed’s excellent blog and, in particular, his questions about ‘justice’ in the light of current conflicts. But it also underlies the concerns behind Christian Aid‘s imaginative Lent programme which involves me and lots of other people tweeting our progress through a reconsideration of stuff, motivation and lifestyle choices. Join up on Twitter and join in the exercise…