“The meaning is in the waiting.”

Whilst taking a vacation in Cornwall a few years ago I visited The Church of St. Enodoc. Primarily it was known to me as the burial place of the poet Sir John Betjeman. However the history of the church is intriguing. A church in the middle of a golf course, it just doesn’t get any better, does it? Shifting sand dunes covered the church in the early eighteenth century and in the nineteenth century sand was removed and dunes stabilized. Part of the present building dates back to the thirteenth century. http://www.greatenglishchurches.co.uk/html/st_enodoc.html

Betjeman did write a poem about the church – Sunday Afternoon Service in St. Enodoc Church, but it is too long to place here try the link http://books.google.com/books?id=-P4YBAAAQBAJ&pg=PA113&lpg=PA113&dq=Come+on!+Come+on!+This+hillock+hides

I would like though to use a poem from R.S.Thomas who himself was most at home on the west coast of Wales, due north of Cornwall. In his poem Kneeling we hear Thomas the priest speak about prayer, preaching and waiting. Perhaps that is what we ought to do in this busy Holy Week, seek out the silence and wait, and in the waiting find meaning.

KNEELING by R.S.Thomas
Moments of great calm,
Kneeling before an altar
Of wood in a stone church
In summer, waiting for the God
To speak; the air a staircase
For silence; the sun’s light
Ringing me, as though I acted
A great role. And the audiences
Still; all that close throng
Of spirits waiting, as I,
For the message.
Prompt me, God;
But not yet. When I speak,
Though it be you who speak
Through me, something is lost.
The meaning is in the waiting.

Loving God,
upon you I wait.
Help me to be patient
in my waiting.
As patient as Abraham,
and as patient as Sara.
As patient as Naomi
and as patient as Ruth.
As patient as Knox or Calvin.
As patient as Martin Luther King
and as patient as Nelson Mandela.
in the waiting
we find meaning. Amen.

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