Thursday, June 30, 2011


Very sadly, a family friend died the other day after a long illness. There was so much gratitude, though, for the care and support of St Joseph's Hospice in Hackney - for giving care with kindness, effort and dignity. I remember, when my sister died, the dedication and flexibility of the Macmillan nurses. Where the hospital nurses had forgotten things, and been so rushed they could hardly cope, the Macmillan nurses took time to make sure that all the family were treated with great respect.

Maybe we could all ask ourselves whether we are like a hospital or a hospice. Perhaps, like some hospitals, we are busy, at the limit, worried, defensive and urgent, fighting battles, pushing people around.

But perhaps we could take the time to be more like a hospice, trying to take care of each other with dignity and respect, listening to each other's needs, and making sure we respect each other's right to a life free from fear and pain, and full of dignity. It's only a short life really. And what does it cost to be kind? A little time, a little less urgency, and a generosity of spirit. Those extra things make life worth it, feed the soul, and give hope.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


In recent weeks, I've seen some situations where I've struggled to understand what is happening. It's seemed as if the world has turned upside down and lost its senses. But I've found one quote from C.S. Lewis a big help:

"If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair."

It's so true. It seems that, sometimes, when we reach for comfort, the world isn't ready to give it. But if we keep strong in the knowledge of who we are, and keep our intentions happy, and hold to what is true and good, then comfort may come in the end. Sending a big hug to anyone under pressure, or feeling unhappy, confused or alone. Keep being yourself, try to live as openly and truthfully as you can, and keep helping others, even when it seems hopeless. Even in confusing times, there is still good in the world!