Oranges and eggs

BVN Article

Thursday 01 February

It’s behind you! Christmas, that is, for another year anyway.

Having said goodbye to Rev Sarah on Christmas Day we look forward now to the arrival of our new vicar Rev Natalie (Nat) White at the end of April. We hope you will join us in welcoming her to the Village. In the meantime all the usual services and Church activities are carrying on as usual.

Christmas already seems like a long time ago. No doubt some bright spark will know how many shopping days are left until the next one. The Easter Eggs were in the shops on New Year’s Day this year – a record? I don’t know about you but I’ve still got four chocolate oranges to get through before I start on the eggs! When I was a child the end of Christmas was not signalled by the arrival of Easter Eggs in the shops but by the annual family outing to a pantomime. It was        exciting and magical, and I didn’t know at the time that most of the jokes weren’t meant for the kids.  It’s a funny old thing pantomime in which convention is usually tipped on its head. A woman plays the principal boy, a man plays the dame and two people pretend humorously to be a horse. Audience participation is encouraged, and everyone is urged to  "Boo" the villain. If you are lucky a few custard pies will be flung and there will no doubt be a celebrity guest star. (Although if you have to ask who they are does that count? Or is that just me being old and out of touch?). No matter what the story, pantomime presents a tale of good battling against evil and emerging triumphant. Danger and despair are overcome. The chocolate eggs have put in an early appearance because Easter falls early this year with Lent beginning on 14th February. Christians observe the 40-day period as a time for reflection, prayer and penance. It is common these days for believers to surrender a particular vice such as   favourite foods (I’d better finish those chocolate oranges quick).    
Whatever the sacrifice it is a reflection of Jesus’ deprivation in the wilderness and a test of self-denial and self-discipline. Lent recalls the events leading up to and including Jesus’ crucifixion. As Jesus rides into Jerusalem to a cheering crowd the mood changes quickly and becomes alarmingly dark. Before long the crowd are whipped up into a frenzy of hate, clamouring for Jesus’ death. Danger and despair are very much in evidence as Jesus is captured, flogged and nailed to a cross to die. At Easter all is made right as we   celebrate His resurrection. Is this the ultimate tale of good battling evil and emerging victorious, where hope and love triumph forever? Oh yes it is! 
Anne Parker-Tyler & Pat Milner (Churchwardens)

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