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Viewpoint from Revd Dr Steven Sivyer 27/03/2019

STEVEN SIVYER 2019Rev Dr Steven Sivyer

Priest-in-Charge of Martham, Repps, Thurne, and Clippesby


as published in the Great Yarmouth Mercury


Building People Up and Knocking Them Down

Before I was a parish priest I was a church organist.  In both of these ministries you try to ensure that you are never late, but I was late once; not only did I not make the service but I was also late for a wedding that followed.  The date was 31 August 1997 and I had stayed over at a friend’s 21st birthday party.  In spite of what you might now be thinking, the reason I was late was because my friend lived in Kensington, and I had to drive back past Kensington Palace.  This was the day that Princess Diana died and what seemed like the nation flocked to her address and laid flowers across the drive and road.  There was a huge outpouring of grief because people felt that their thirst for a sensational story supported the press in hounding Diana to the point of the car chase that ended her life
dove leftThis same thirst is behind the way that Meghan has been reported on in contrast to the Duchess of Cambridge, even though both had been favourably represented in the past.  Then, more recently, we have witnessed another outpouring of grief following the death of Caroline Flack after some negative press as she was alleged to have assaulted her boyfriend.  It seems as if our human condition loves to build someone up, only to enjoy knocking them down again.  The higher we build them, the further they have to fall.  We can momentarily enjoy this steep emotional rollercoaster ride, only to be hit with grief and guilt afterwards
In Lent we are journeying towards Holy Week, a week that begins with Palm Sunday where the crowds singing “hosanna” built Jesus up, only to knock him down again by then shouting “crucify” five days later.  Starting with Ash Wednesday where we reflected on the fact that we came from dust and will return to dust one day, Lent is valuable period of time where we can think about our own human condition to the point that, when we do get to the end of Holy Week, we might just realise the extent of the hope that Jesus’ resurrection brings


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