Pilgrimage at Home – 2

Michael HutchinsonPilgrimage

The Life that Vibrates

Shaken by his recent experience, Cuthbert needed to be alone. Too many strings were being plucked in his mind. His whole life seemed to vibrate as though in a strange call. As he climbed a hill, his mind went back to when he was 8 years old…

He had been fooling about with a group of other children, doing backflips on the green. A child of only three began to weep as if heart-broken. Cuthbert, with his trademark love and care, asked what was the matter. 

“You are the matter, Cuthbert,” wailed the child with great sobs.

“Why? What have I done?”

“O holy bishop and priest Cuthbert, these sorts of games are not right for one of your high calling.”

The words frightened Cuthbert, for these seemed not to be the mere words of a child.

The next memory came flooding back to Cuthbert. He was on the north side of the Tyne, not far from the monastery on the opposite side, where some monks were ferrying wood for the monastery on a raft. A violent wind arose, blowing the raft and the monks downriver and towards the sea. Despite the efforts of the monks from the monastery, the winds were too strong, and the monks on the raft were in real danger of being swept out to sea. They were beyond human help. People gathered to watch the unfolding of the drama. “God help them,” muttered a bystander. “Rubbish to that,” replied another, “let them drown, for they have robbed us of our old way of worship. Our troubles are surely their fault.”

Cuthbert made no reply, but watched and waited, and when he felt the time was right, he knelt down, bowed his head to the ground and prayed. Immediately, the wind turned and the rafts were driven to the place they wanted to be. Sounds of rejoicing arose from the far bank, and those with Cuthbert were left ashamed and stony-faced. Cuthbert knew that when he prayed, strange things happened; when he did not, they did not seem to.

Opening Prayer

Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
    in the heavens.
Through the praise of children and infants
    you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
    to silence the foe and the avenger.
When I consider your heavens,
    the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
    which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
    human beings that you care for them?

You have made them a little lower than the angels
    and crowned them with glory and honour.
You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
    you put everything under their feet:
all flocks and herds,
    and the animals of the wild,
the birds in the sky,
    and the fish in the sea,
    all that swim the paths of the seas.

Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Closing Prayer

Thank you for my family,
For hugs and kisses and special times together.
Thank you for my friends,
For laughter and chatting and sharing.
Thank you for my home,
For rest times, bath times and bed times.
Thank you for food,
For breakfast, lunch and dinner and snacks and treats.
Thank you for playtimes, For toys and games and books.
Thank you for fun,
For giggles and for silly happy times.
Thank you for making all these lovely things 
And for helping me to enjoy them all.