Saturday, 16 May 2009

The Green Man

On the 1st May I went up to Cambridge to pick up my new (second hand) car - see post on Low Saturday ( if you don't know why I needed one. My son, who is (hopefully) studying in Cambridge met me and we were having lunch in the Maypole pub when a group of folksingers turned up - including the character in fancy dress in the photo.

This reminded me of a holiday my wife and I enjoyed a few years ago visiting cathedrals in east England. In several of them there were carvings or pictures of the Green Man - a character from pagan folk tradition and nothing, I thought, to do with Christianity. However as the Green Man represents re-birth it could be used as a starting point to talk about the death and resurrection of Jesus.

The UK is now a post-Christian society and while a majority of the population say they believe in God they do not have the knowledge of the Bible and the meaning of the Christian festivals of Christmas, Easter and Pentecost which could have been taken for granted 50 years, or less, ago.

The challenge to the Church is how to communicate with people who have no understanding of our faith so perhaps we need to learn from our Christian forebears and start with examples from their culture that can communicate the Gospel.

1 comment:

Serena said...

Very well put. For most people Easter literally *means* little more than a long bank holiday weekend, for example. To then add a load of supernatural stuff seems quaint, absurd or even unpleasant (all that death, ugh!).