Evanescence (II)

[Please read Part 1 first.] 2. Living in a Desert A hospital is parallel universe. Even as a member of staff it is possible to be admitted by the front doors and have an extended stay, being able to wash, have a haircut, buy food, enjoy café society, eat, and even sleep there – as … Continue reading Evanescence (II)

Evanescence (I)

To keep death before one's eyes daily. Rule of St Benedict, Chapter IV 1. The Hospital is a Desert As I have written here before, I was a hospital chaplain for about 8 years. It was difficult work and I struggled, but I count this time as a blessing. I encountered God on many occasions. … Continue reading Evanescence (I)

Trust Me (conclusion)

[This is the conclusion to Monday's post, Trust Me.] So, in what can we trust? Firstly what it is not: I cannot trust that I will find a parking space. I cannot trust that I will get that job I want. I cannot trust that my life will go well. I cannot trust that I … Continue reading Trust Me (conclusion)

Failure of Memory

In the last few days I have sat with two people with failing memories. One could not remember that their spouse had died in the last few hours, could not remember being there, the time and place, the last conversation. The other, who plaintively, anxiously asks for a sibling who visits every afternoon with a … Continue reading Failure of Memory

On Illness and Punishment

When they fetch up in hospital because of an illness or old age, some religious people ask, "Why is this happening to me?" and might add "I've been a good person." Some have never thought about their mortality. Illness takes them by surprise. They have made no preparation. Illness and death is an affront to … Continue reading On Illness and Punishment