Sunday, 20 March 2016

Palm Sunday Pastoralia

The sun shone, but it was too chilly to start this morning's Palm Sunday procession at St German's out in the churchyard garden, Palms were distributed and blessed in the hall. Then we walked briskly across to the garden before entering church and doing a couple of circuits before starting the Mass. Last weekend a volunteer team came and did a superb job cleaning and tidying the garden, which had become overgrown in recent years. Then Hilary and Peter came with some bedding plants to give a lovely touch of colour to the place. Such a great source of good cheer to the congregation, numbering fifty people today.

After the service there was a sixtieth birthday party luncheon for local locksmith and church stalwart Richard Hill, his family, friends and congregation members filling the hall. Sadly, being well aware of the excellent food being served, I could only stay long enough to say grace and call for the first toast before going home, conscious of the need to arrange a bereavement visit for tomorrow's funeral at St Mary's Bute Street. Fortunately, making contact proved easy. When I arrived at the son's house, where we were meeting, I was touched to discover that Mam's coffin was in one corner of the lounge, very traditional. It's such a rarity to see nowadays. I introduced myself to husband, son and daughter in law and explained what had happened, and from our conversation gleaned additional information to add into Fr David's notes passed on to me. Then I felt confident about doing justice to the occasion tomorrow.

Another impressive episode of 'The Night Manager' this evening on BBC Four, full of tension and surprises, setting the scene for next week's finale. Straight after it, a Spanish comedy film was showing, also on BBC Four. 'Los Amantes Viajeres' is a very Rabelaisian spoof on the American 'Airplane' film series. I had to stay up and watch it for Spanish homework, and it made me laugh out loud. Although I would have struggled without sub-titles, it was good to hear dialogue at a normal pace, and find I could identify about half of the words, even if that fell short of full comprehension.

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