November – 1st: All Saints, 2nd: All Souls, 5th: Guy Fawkes, 8th: Remembrance, 11th: Armistice… 22nd: Christ the King (and 29th is Advent Sunday this year). Lots of church, community, and civic highlights. This year still very real, and very important – but subdued and maybe overshadowed by the virus.
Remembering still matters though. Not just wars and those lost in them or damaged by them, not just those currently in our armed forces – though we mustn’t minimise that at all. But we need to remember our story, our history (even Guy Fawkes and his co-conspirators). We need to remember our church story, and who we are as the inheritors of all the saints, named and unnamed. We need to remember those we have lost, those who have gone before us into eternity. And above all, we need to remember that Jesus is still Lord, that Christ is still King, High King, Lord of lords and King of kings.
In these strange days of covid, apparently running through the dark winter ahead, we need hope and light. In a sense, some of that comes through our support for each other, our continued self-discipline for the common good, and the scientific endeavour to find a cure or at least a vaccine. But in the deepest sense, hope and light come only through Christ – and we are assured of that by remembering the past.
Ultimately we have hope, and light at the end of every tunnel, because God is faithful. Scripture and church history point so consistently to a merciful, saving, promise-keeping, faithful God. Nothing “in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord”. “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength.” “Come to me, all you who are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”
Remember, remember, what a faithful God we have. Remember, remember, his faithfulness to the saints of old. Remember, remember, that Jesus is King. Remember, remember, that he promises to put all things right.
With best wishes