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A Redeeming Sun

Hi Sarah and a solemn Good Friday to you!

What does one say? When I was young our whole day was a reverent one and our thoughts were on the death of Jesus who made the ultimate sacrifice of allowing Himself to be crucified by Roman soldiers to redeem our souls. I’m trying to focus on this but there is some sort of disconnect happening. I shut my eyes and try to recreate the events in my head, but still I cannot focus. Good Friday at age thirteen was not like Good Friday now

It's like early summer out there and almost certainly proof of climate change, unless one is one of those sceptics. Yesterday St. Hildegarde's closed down for the next four days and here I am at home feeling slightly in limbo without the usual routines. I'm reminiscing a bit, or ruminating or meditating or all of these. Not sure whether it was such a bright idea of me to get my X-ray report explained to me yesterday, a beautiful sun shiny day, a forecast of a glorious weekend. Anyway, to cut through the crap, it's possibly arthritis, albeit mild, in both big toe joints, that is causing some discomfort. Short of sulking and feeling sorry for myself (I can still walk) I'm not exactly a source of laughter and joy this morning and I have been buried in books like " How to Beat or Reverse Arthritis”. I'm still thinking it's something else, like a gym injury and plan to pamper my 'tender tootsies' as my doctor refers to them. Perhaps it's this North American diet, apparently too high in acid and other evil things that cause flare-ups in millions of people on this continent. No one wants to hear sob stories and so, as my mother used to say in Dutch, I'm putting a line under it (literal translation, meaning ... the end ... of my complaining, I mean).

I do have a recollection type of short piece for Francine for next class. Have a look. It's memoir (what else) and tries to capture some of my feelings about a Good Friday I once spent in Niagara with Philomena. I just cannot picture meeting Francis tomorrow at Moira's Art Show and need to psyche myself up big time. Please write and bolster my spirits! 


I wanted to reflect on Abu Ghraib and on Nanking instead - present day realities. I chose not to sit in a church, standing, kneeling with everyone as I had always done on Good Fridays in the past. For more than half a century now, each Lent, I had relived the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, heard the readings about the thorns, the lashes and the ultimate death. I remember one year how the huge wooden cross fell on Fr. Lowrie and how the Philippino ladies rushed from their chairs to rescue him. I didn’t need those distractions around me this time and chose to go instead for a walk on the old historic nature trail.

The wind whipped around my head where I sat, alone, ice on the ground in front of me. A singular bench beckoned me, my Good Friday pew in an eerie expanse of fields. The early spring’s weak warmth comforted me and the tall trees formed a protective canopy above my head. Each tree was firmly rooted in the midst of a circular orb much like mini craters with poles in their centres. Pale mauve shadows flared out from each tree as if attempting escape. Futile efforts. Willowy white branches rose up from the shining ground and reflected back their growth in mirrors of ice. The tremendous extensions twisted in every direction. They strove for perfection, balance and escape.

A redeeming sun shone over us all, myself and this colony of trees whose filigree branches stretched upwards towards a steely sky.

P.S. Please let me know if this is too surreal or dreamlike or depressing. Be honest!

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