Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Back in Jerusalem

My dear blogwatchers,

How sorry I am that such a long time has elapsed since my last entry.  I went back to England for April both because my visa needed renewing and because I was going back for the Week of Creative Prayer which St Peter's has during Holy Week - a special time for those who create it and those who come for spiritual refreshment - and of course Easter.

Whilst in WSM I made the most of every moment, both for ChA+,  St Peter's services, nursing home ministry, home communions, and of course family and friends.   So when I returned to Jerusalem on 8th May I knew I had overdone it, so much so that when I was getting on the plane I felt fine, but by the time I got off I knew I had a corker of a cold.

Some of you will know that flying is not easy for me, but it's a shortish flight 5.5 hours or so.   That is until the plane taxis to the runway and then announces that the senior stewardess is unwell and we will have to return to the stand .... well at least we hadn't taken off.   On came the paramedics, and eventually about an hour later they accompanied the stewardess off the plane (she was well enough to walk off), a replacement had been found and we were off again, exactly one hour late!  Quite a long time if you don't particularly like being on a plane in the first place!

As if that wasn't enough my  clutch bag with my passport in it stayed in the baggage trolley when I transferred my cases at Tel Aviv airport to go on to Jerusalem!  Oops!  But help was at hand, as it was for the complete arrival to Jerusalem procedure.   First it was necessary to get the car park barrier raised at the Ratisbonne Center - they did not  know when we would be arriving - but there was a seminarian at the entrance just at the right time to raise the barrier   Onward to the front door and Br Elio just opened the door as if by appointment, followed by someome else who provided a helping hand to get my bags up the outside stairs.  

But still there was the problem of the passport.   Not to worry though, one of the Bat Kol Board members from USA is also staying at Ratisbonne and his son works, guess where?, on security at Tel Aviv airport.  A couple of phone calls and the bag was located still in the trolley in the car park and was safely secured for me to pick up on Monday.

I have to say, delayed flight,  cold, passport problem, whatever, it still felt very good to be back.

Passport retrieved and I was soon back in the office, not having too much to catch up on as I had been keeping up with Bat Kol work in the evenings whilst in WSM.  But we still did not have a workable program, nor were professors booked - more of that perhaps later.

All was going well, although I missed church on the first Sunday because I felt really ill with my cold.   Then on Monday I was reunited with my passport, things were looking better but .....   There was still the fall to come!  Coming out of the kitchen at Ratisbonne, a plate in each hand, I decided I could close the door behind me with one foot!   Don't laugh - it hurt!   How could I have imagined I could balance on one foot when I'm not usually safe on two.    Suddenly the marble  floor and I met with a huge thud - I don't know how I could possibly land on my left eyebrow causing a gash and a black eye, without breaking my glasses or the plates,and also do so much painful damage to my ribcage.   When I resort first to Paracetamol and then to CoCodamol you will  know it is painful!!!!!!!

I think you may be getting the idea why the blog has not been done before.  For those of you who have worried about me and prayed for me - thank you so much, but be assured that I am now well again  and I will do another update in a day or two.   Just for now,  beautiful words from the Mishkan T'Filah. a Jewish  Reform Siddur, prayer book, remembering particularly my own recovery not just from the cold and the fall, but from all that has gone before:

In my half sleep, O God,
in my yawning confusion,
I thank you with a croaking voice.

How strange and spectacular
the body You have granted me
and fill with awareness each morning. 

For tongue, tendon, teeth and skin,
for all the chemicals and connections
that make this collection of cells

into a being who can stand and sing,
who can seek Your love
and offer love in return,

for the mechanisms and mysteries
You have implanted within me
I will thank You

and set about the task of being human
as the sun rises
and my eyes begin to clear. 

May you also know the miracle of God's healing presence as He restores and rerfreshes you each day.  For more wonders read Psalm 139 

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