Spring Musings

Spring Musings

by Sr. Sheila Campbell MMM                                     Ireland                           27.02.2024

On Christmas morning I went into the chapel and sat down expecting to be thinking of the newborn babe and all the joy of Christmas. Instead, my thoughts wandered ahead to Easter. “Stop it, Sheila”, I said to myself. “Live in the present moment.” But the thoughts persisted, and I think it was because of the photo of the daffodil. I took this picture myself on the morning of December 25th, just outside our chapel.

Far too early for daffodils, yes, but here they are, and it made me realise that climate change is affecting all aspects of our lives. What once was a spring flower, and in my mind associated with Easter, now will forever remind me of Christmas!

So, as I sat there with this Christmas/ Easter paradox in my mind, the words of T. S. Eliot came to mind. “I had seen birth and death but had thought they were different.” This comes from a poem from the Christmas season, ironically enough, called “The Journey of the Magi”. So, I wasn’t alone in linking Christmas and Easter. Basically, we are talking about the whole cycle of life – birth, growth, diminishment, death and rebirth.

I am not in any way morbid about this, in fact the opposite. I strongly believe that good will triumph over evil, that after darkness there is light, and that there is a God who is out for our good, not our despair. Yes, when we listen to the stories in the news it is often bleak with wars, natural disasters, famines and floods. But the good news is rarely told. The thousands of acts of kindness, of love for others, of stretching beyond ourselves that happens every day. I have this theory that each one of us knows at least one “saint”. These are people who lives genuinely good lives and care for others. They are not perfect. They don’t need to be. But they are good people and will never hit the headlines! So life is good and we can rejoice in that.

As we prepare for Easter once again, it is good to take the optimistic approach and see the birth with the death as one whole mystery we celebrate each year.