2021: a new year of change and the promise of hope

Dec 31, 2020 by

by Archbishop Cranmer:

As seasons go, 2020 was a year to cast away. It was a time die, a time to break down, a time to weep and a time to mourn. Its shadows and darkness went on forever, often plunging us to the depths of despair. The snail of time slithered through endless months of lockdown, and the morning never broke through. Workers did not work, children could not play, families flocked to foodbanks, friends could not drink tea, and the Archbishop of Canterbury closed all the churches, even to clergy, for the first time in 800 years. If God was near, he was not sensed. Our homes became prisons, unwalked dogs howled, and the stench of death choked the voice of the lamb.

The miseries of 2020 are best forgotten: it was a year of dullness, distance, coldness and deathly infection. We lost so much, and said goodbye to so many. The odour of mould will fade, and the palpitations will be steadied. God will draw near, and He may be sensed. It will take a bit more time for the plastic masks to become smiling faces once again, but that time will surely come. Let the curtain now fall. Farewell, shadows.

2021 offers a promise of hope: a time to heal, a time to build up, a time to laugh and a time to dance. There is calm now for those who weep, and a beam of light for those who were lost. Who would have thought even a month ago that the Covid plague would be tamed with a vaccine, or that the United Kingdom would secure a deal with the European Union, finally bringing an end to the purgatory of Brexit half-life? There is more to do, of course, but the act of Brexit heralds an era of ever-further divergence. This is now, finally, the settlement of the State.

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