ST DENYS CALLS TO MIND

THE END OF OUR BALMY DAYS EN FRANCE brought us back to English earth with a bump. Every year I’ve forgotten how long it takes to grapple again with the daily routine of my more usual, actual, English parish life. And days have flown by without a word for this weblog, and too little time for the contemplation I preach about! But I spoke to our Mothers’ Union tonight, St Denys’ Day, and recalling the third century Bishop of Paris, now Patron Saint of France, took me back to our peaceful days and nights beneath the Chapelle Sainte-Avoye in Brittany and back, too, to Sacré Coeur and Notre Dame. I knew when we were there that the silence of the encounters would come home with me to England. And tonight, at least in heart and mind, an English Mothers’ Union ‘visited’ two of the great shrines of French Christian witness, and in the quiet places of individual hearts will, no doubt, do so again. My own heart and mind were stilled a little. Holidays have reminded me to make time for holy days.