Message From Our Minister November 2018

Many of you have met Oscar my oldest spaniel. He is an old boy now and his back legs are full of arthritis. Once he was able to run for kilometres along the beach but now he just hobbles around.

One of the things we’ve bought him is a doggy pushchair which means he can have a little walk and then watch Scarlet and Lola [Chris’s other dogs] as they run around. People have laughed when they have seen the doggy pushchair and more than one person thought we had a baby in it. The dog walkers with young dogs think we’re a little eccentric (be nice!) but those with older ones are very interested and think our pushchair is great.

What can seem daft to one person can seem perfectly sensible when you look at it a different way with different experiences. Perspective is everything.  Oscar’s joy at being able to have a walk, more than makes up for the sideways looks we get as we push him around. 

This month we mark Remembrance and remember that people did both wonderful and terrible things in extraordinary times. Our perspectives 100 years on from the Great War often blur the realities of war and, with World War 2 rapidly becoming history rather than living people’s memories, it’s easy to forget what really happened in the fog of nostalgia.

If we are to honour the best of what happened, we have to learn from the worst to make sure that these things never happen again. To do that we need to change our perspectives and ensure that young lives are never sacrificed again on the altar of pride, arrogance and nationalism. Those empty Gods often promise much but deliver very little.

Let us remember, so history does not have to repeat itself again.

Chris Dowd