Sunday, 5 December 2010

Let it Snow

Weve lived in England for almost 7 years. It has snowed every year, but not until late February and sometimes early March. Im sure if you watch the news (or for my UK mates if you live here) you will have noticed that  weve been snowed in. Some places are blizzards, some knee deep in the white stuff. Thankfully we are only just freezing our booties off with about 1 inch of snow and ice. Today it was -4 degrees C--with a wind chill factor of -8. Our lives are going on pretty much as normal--school still in session and all that.

What worries me is what does this mean for the upcoming months? Will they continue to be this bloody cold? I am worried about Hitchins homeless who have to sleep rough in this weather. A man named  Mark who sometimes sleeps behind our church has a terrible chest infection. I am not sure he can take the cold. He has tried to get into a nearly shelter 3 times and each time he has been turned away---they are overbooked. This may be his last winter. I keep bringing him blankets  and oranges for the vitamin C--he takes the blanket but rolls his eyes at my oranges. I am trying to help him stay well, but it may not be enough.

There are always those in need and we must look out for them if we are in a position to do so. This is one of my favourite carols and really exemplifies what I hope to do with my life.

    Good King Wenceslas looked out,
On the Feast of Stephen,
When the snow lay round about,
Deep and crisp and even;
Brightly shone the moon that night,
Tho' the frost was cruel,
When a poor man came in sight,
Gath'ring winter fuel.

"Hither, page, and stand by me,
If thou know'st it, telling,
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?"
"Sire, he lives a good league hence,
Underneath the mountain;
Right against the forest fence,
By Saint Agnes' fountain."

"Bring me flesh, and bring me wine,
Bring me pine logs hither:
Thou and I will see him dine,
When we bear them thither."
Page and monarch, forth they went,
Forth they went together;
Thro' the rude wind's wild lament
And the bitter weather.

"Sire, the night is darker now,
And the wind blows stronger;
Fails my heart, I know not how,
I can go no longer."
Mark my footsteps, good my page;
Tread thou in them boldly:
Thou shalt find the winter's rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly."

In his master's steps he trod,
Where the snow lay dinted;
Heat was in the very sod
Which the saint had printed.
Therefore, Christian men, be sure,
Wealth or rank possessing,
Ye who now will bless the poor,
Shall yourselves find blessing.

Whats your weather like? How do you help the homeless and downtrodden of your city?

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