Anything but an ordinary week

Featured image: Good old St Ives and the “island” home to St Nicholas Chapel, where some churches gather for Easter sunrise. We gathered there in 2010, with Jerry and Becky Miller who were then hosts at the then London Mennonite Centre. We walked to the chapel in the dark, shivering mightily in the cold, and gradually heard others gather. One of the area pastors led a meditation, we sang some hymns, shared hugs, and watched a glorious sunrise over the bay.

Cogitation 13 Saturday 31 March 2018   The week has been anything but ordinary.

Lunch on Monday with friends Tim and Margaret Cartwright got us off to a good start in the last week of Lent. The meal included Rockin’ Moroccan.

Recipe for Rockin’ Moroccan

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 cup chopped onions

1/2 cup each of celery and green pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

3 cups vegetable broth

3 cups peeled, bite-size cubed sweet potatoes

1 can (19oz) chopped tomatoes

1 can chickpeas

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp each of cumin, curry, chili, coriander powder

1/2 tsp salt; 1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 cup raisins

1/2 cup smooth peanut butter

cilantro, chopped

Sauté onions, celery, green pepper, and garlic in hot olive oil. Add all ingredients except raisins, peanut butter, and cilantro.

Bring to a boil. Simmer on low for 20 minutes. Stir in raisins, peanut butter, and cilantro.  For those who do not care for cilantro, serve it separately rather than adding to the simmering pot. Simmer 5 minutes. Serving suggestion: Serve with crusty bread and butter, a plate of cheese and olives, end with a fruit crumble and tea or coffee.

Amy Harder, our niece, introduced us to this recipe when she and her sister, Rachel Bender, visited us in Cornwall in 2012. Yummy with and without company.

The week in brief 

Other highlights of the week include books, a day trip to the Cornish coast villages of Looe and Polperro, a walk to Hayle, the musical Evita at the Hall for Cornwall in Truro, Maundy Thursday Agape Meal at St Paul’s Church in Chacewater near Truro with Noel and Lynne Brereton, the Good Friday Liturgy at Truro Cathedral, and a Saturday train trip with Steve and Marilyn Bowden to Plymouth.

Let photos show the story.

Jesus in Joseph’s carpenter shop; window in St Paul’s Church, Chacewater, near Truro.

The Good Friday Liturgy

With friends Noel and Lynne Brereton we attended the hour-and-a-half Good Friday service at Truro Cathedral. Truro is about 20 miles from Carbis Bay.

During the Veneration of the Cross part of the service, the congregation came forward to individually kneel, touch or kiss the Cross or offer a silent prayer,. During that time of solemn reflection the Cathedral Choir sang God’s Reproaches to the people. The setting of the Reproaches is that of an ancient text based on Scripture in which God’s love for us is strongly contrasted with the hatred that the human race has shown towards Jesus Christ.

The Reproaches opened with “Oh my people what have I done to you? / How have I offended you? Answer me.”

Further: “I led you out of Egypt, from slavery to freedom, / but you led your Saviour to the cross.”

The people repeatedly respond with “Holy is God! Holy and strong! / Holy immortal One, have mercy on us.”

“For forty years I led you safely through the desert. / I fed you with manna from heaven, / and brought you to a land of plenty: / but you led your Saviour to the cross.”

Further: “What more could I have done for you? / I planted you as my fairest vine: / but you yielded only bitterness. / When I was thirsty you gave me vinegar to drink, and you pierced your Saviour’s side with a lance.”

The assertion, “Answer me,” kept hitting home. God’s firm, yet loving gaze, illumined the morning dim and chill.  “I gave you a royal scepter: / but you gave me a crown of thorns. / I raised you to the height of majesty; / but you have raised me high on a cross.

“O my people, what have I done to you? / How have I offended you? Answer me.”

Earlier in the service the choir sang the Passion Gospel according to St John. The worship guide noted that “St John’s gospel is the account that stresses most strongly that the cross is a place not of failure, but of victory and glory.”

The service ended with Holy Communion, in one kind, the bread. “This is a sacramental symbol for us of God’s sustaining presence during our darkest moments, and of life amidst death.”

I left the service with Amen, Amen, and Amen coursing through my heart and mind. Through word and sacramental sign we acknowledged our sorrow and dereliction and through adoration and praise received fresh courage to take up our cross in devotion and discipleship. Thanks be to God.


Saturday visit to Plymouth

Mayflower, 1620, set sail from Plymouth in Devon to establish a colony in the New World. Fine museum.
Barbican Quay, Sutton Pool, Plymouth, from where 102 passengers aboard ship sailed 67 days, arriving near
Cape Cod, in what is now Provincetown Harbour.
Charles Church, burned out by incendiary bombs in WW 2. Founded 1634-1665, named after King Charles II.
Daisies in the walk around Charles Church. You take your life in your hands to cross the streets that circle the church..
Kept as a memorial to the Plymouth lives lost in the war and as a reminder of 300 years of spiritual ministry, today carried out by the Parish of Charles and St Mathias, one of the daughter churches.
A vicar who was born here, worth Googling.






6 thoughts on “Anything but an ordinary week

  1. Easter greetings to you. The flowers are lovely. The only flowers I see are the pink tulips on my table. Cold weather seems to persist and rain and wind. So as you shiver I do too. The daisies on the footpath in and around the church look promising that warmer weather is soon on its way.


    1. Some of our guests have had a second and third helping–maybe because we offered little else for the meal. Cilantro to some people tastes like soap, so we offer it on the side. Enjoy, with or without!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds like a full and significant week! Glad to see the sun shining in at least one photo. I think the unnamed flower might be a cyclamen. We have fond memories of walking down the incline to Polperro harbor, bright hanging baskets of flowers adorning the walls beside the river — a charming spot. We’re off to the Easter Vigil tonight — which will begin outdoors. The sun is shining, so it won’t be as cold as some years. A blessed Easter to you!


  3. A full and significant week it was. Easter Monday shows some signs of brightening and we’ll get out rain or shine. Thanks for identifying the wild flower, cyclamen it likely is–amen.


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