First Word May 2020


LOSS and HOPE As we come to end of the day when we have commemorated the 75th Anniversary of Victory in Europe two words seem to stand out from all that we have reflected upon – those words are LOSS and HOPE and they summarize the mood of the nation 75 years ago but they also speak to this generation as we contend with the Coronavirus outbreak and wonder what the future shall be. As the war in Europe came to an end families and governments began to understand the cost in terms of human life and the Loss of those who would not be returning. For many the pain was too much and they did not speak of what had been experienced. Whilst Europe rejoiced others bore the pain of knowing that in the Far East the war still raged on against the Japanese and would not end until 15 August and VJ Day. But along with the deep sense of Loss of human life – was the awareness of the Loss of a culture – a society that would for ever be changed. Old relationships within families and in the work place were re-configured. But Peace brought also the sense of Hope that the fighting would end and people could begin to build for a new future; that homes which had been destroyed might be re-built. As we fast forward to 2020 we too experience a large Loss of human life as a result of the Covid 19 disease across the world. Along with the Loss of life - is also the Loss of employment – the uncertainty of the future. But there is also Hope that a vaccine can be found to address the virus; that civil liberties and freedoms might be restored; that the economy might recover and perhaps most of all that there will emerge a fairer society, a more just way of valuing each other – of recognizing the worthiness and dignity of each person. The gospel message of the Christian faith is one of Hope. Jesus says I am the way, and the truth and the life – where I am going there you will be also. Fr. Stuart Nairn