It was good after the sadnesses of attending dad's requiem mass on Friday so soon after mum's in February, to go for a long jog over Wimbledon Common this morning in beautiful sunny weather, with Chris.
Chris told me that his son who is in a military signals regiment is flying out to Afghanistan shortly. I believe that the conflicts there are less intense than they were but the dangers clearly remain to those from the West sent out to help keep the peace.
As we jogged the fact that maytrees mi had less than a month ago been admitted to St Georges NHS Hospital for a life and death operation came to my mind. Maytrees mi's recovery is almost startling and he should soon return to his professional career. Interesting too that his employers which are large international firm are being so supportive and understanding during this difficult time for him - death defying moments affecting someone are clearly thought provoking for all his or her family friends colleagues and employers.
Being part of a family for 64+ years with two loving parents and then suddenly being in a family where both parents have died, is a shock which is not lessened by the fact that nearly everyone else has to bear such a shock themselves at one stage or another in their lives.
The 'life goes on' philosophy is in my view important. In a coincidental and almost helpful way, a change in personal professional life is about to impact when I leave the firm I have worked with for over 42 years and join another as a consultant.
In many ways the changes in British society which society seems far more secular in C21 than for most of C20, will be challenges for churches and the secular legal advisers who support them. Rather than retire from professional life the prospect of working for churches in a new large firm for a few more years in C21, appeals.
One area of church history which seems dreadfully sad seems to be the way in which some in previous generations seem to have dealt with the babies and children of unmarried mothers. The news coming out of Ireland is stark. The reports suggest that some catholic religious orders there allowed some infant babies of unmarried mothers to die perhaps just because they were affected by illnesses or physical disorders at birth. Such behaviour if it did occur was reprehensible though villifying members of religious orders today for such historic actions with which they were not personally involved seems a little pointless. I wonder too if the more accurate way of viewing such historic tragedies would be to look at the society as a whole in the days when the babies were abandoned in that way. Where was the state? When families abandoned their daughters who took financial responsibility for the daughters' welfares and likewise for the babies? I suppose in a country where the church and state were working almost together at least in ordinary public eyes the church must take the criticisms but what about the state what about the babies' fathers and what about the individual families of the girls - are they all blameless?
Life goes on but hopefully we learn from the mistakes made by our parents and grandparents and make fewer ourselves. The Common Market or should I say the EC also needs to learn from past mistakes but it is I think true to say that the original creation of the Common Market probably brought previously warring European countries together to such an extent that European wars between them now seem most unlikely what ever the future if any for the EC.