“At the Synod, we heard that “the young are focused on the future & they face life with energy & dynamism. But they are also tempted …. To give little attention to the memory of the past from which they come, in particular the many gifts transmitted to them by their parents, their grandparents & the cultural experience of the society in which they live. Helping the young to discover the living richness of the past, to treasure its memory & to make use of it for their choices & opportunities, is a genuine act of love towards them, for the sake of their growth & the decisions they are called to make.” The word of God encourages us to remain close to the elderly, so that we can benefit from their experience. “stand in the assembly of the elders. Who is wise? Cling to him… if you see an intelligent man, visit him: let your foot wear out on his doorstep.” (Eccl 6:34-36) in every case, the long years they lived & all they have experienced in life should make us look at them with respect, for “the glory of the young is their strength, but the beauty of the old is their grey hair.” (Prov 20:29) The Bible also tells us “listen to your father & do not despise your mother when she is old” (Prov 23:22) The command to honour our father & mother is the first commandment to carry a promise with it “that it may be well with you & that you may live long on the earth.” (Eph 6:3) This does not mean having to agree with everything adults say or approving all their actions. A young person should always have a critical spirit. It is a matter of being open to receiving wisdom passed down from generation to generation, a wisdom familiar with human weakness & not deserving to vanish before the novelties the consumer society & the market. The world has never benefitted, nor will it ever benefit, from a rupture between generations. That is the siren song of a future without roots & origins. It is the lie that would have you believe that only what is new is good & beautiful. When intergenerational relationships exist, a collective memory is present in communities, as each generation takes up the teachings of its predecessors & in turn bequeaths a legacy to its successors. In this way, they provide frames of reference for firmly establishing a new society. As the old saying goes: “if the young had knowledge & the old strength there would be nothing they could not accomplish." (“Christus Vivit” by Pope Francis)
Fr Robert was back with us for our Chapter last week & met with Mary Sturges to discuss the Zimbabwe Education Fund. A most generous amount of £5169 has been collected from donors, & Fr Robert has taken 500 US Dollars back with him. We are very grateful for your continuing steady support, particularly as it seems the country is entering into a new food crisis.
Please pray for all our young people receiving A Level & GCSE results about this time. Our congratulations go to Christopher Too, who gave great service to us in playing the organ alternate weeks with David Bowman, & who has just completed a year’s Internship at Gloucester Cathedral, & gained an A* in his organ studies, which allows him to move on to become Organ Scholar at King’s College Cambridge. He sends his very best wishes to you all.