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A New Normal?

New Normal? An outdoor service at St Michael’s, Llanfihangel Din Sylwi (Bro Seiriol, Anglesey). The service was held outside the church building because more people wanted to attend than can fit inside the building under the present Covid-19 restrictions.

Mae’r fersiwn Gymraeg ar gael yma

Many are seeking to understand the consequences for the country in the light of the Covid-19 pandemic. There are voices arguing for a return to the tried and tested ways which have a familiarity about them. Others argue for a radical re-orientation of life for every part of society: the old cisterns are broken and cannot be repaired. What is now needed, it is argued, is nothing less than a fresh expression of life itself engaging society with new priorities and new focus.

Much of the discourse has taken place beneath the title the ‘new normal’ and has settled into a quiet acceptance of the appropriateness of the phrase as a proper and adequate articulation with which to work. Is it? In this paper I want to explore this phrase in relation to the church primarily but also inquire whether it could generate emphases which have wider relevance for society. 


The word ‘new’ is deeply malleable. It lacks specificity. In this context, ‘new’ usually means ‘different’. We speak about what ‘will be’ one day, sometime, somehow as though it will be sufficiently different from what ‘was’, to mark it as ‘new’. When ‘new’ is understood primarily as an economic development it will rightly face criticism that it perpetuates a way of understanding capitalism that has little regard for the environment. The never ending drive for progress and growth can be exploitative and violent, offering the powerful a way of becoming more powerful. In fact, there might be good arguments for less of the ‘new’ and a re-appropriation of some of the ‘old’ if there is a wisdom to be found here. While this will be regarded by some as another example of an institution constantly looking back to a so-called golden era, it does keep alive the possibility that every shift and progression ought not to be well regarded and fully accepted. The referencing of opening the wells in Genesis 26:18 might not be a sufficient ground upon which to found every proposal for change but it is suggestive in the way it addresses deficit with something different from development in the name of progress. This ancient story with its undertones of hostility and entrenched disagreement raises questions about the way we honestly name our disputes and whether anything like a complete resolution of these is possible before we return to what once brought life and blessing.

The voices arguing that Covid-19 allows an economic rebuild which is distinctly ‘green’ appear to be losing ground to those who argue the economic plight and challenges are so great that the environmental challenge needs to take second place to the need for any economic recovery. The force of this argument is real and powerful and present in the negotiations regarding new trade deals following our exit from the European Union. It addresses the immediate issue of national finance, employment and essential services. For the Church, facing issues about who will return to public worship in any numbers, the fragility of our volunteer base and financing ongoing ministry, the drivers are different but no less real.

The axiom might be instructive here: with every challenge there is opportunity. What the church has in abundance are of course property and space, specifically churches and churchyards. In the case of the latter, these spaces are sometimes cared for lovingly by a local church or community group but are also often neglected. The re-wilding movement (and recently rewilding of church life) even if not universally welcomed, has reminded a society that diversity is not only a good ordering of nature but an opportunity for engaging those who have not participated in either church or community life. The opportunity to experiment appropriately with churchyards, with specific wilding and environmental intent could prove to be one of the most exciting opportunities we could provide as a church. There are examples aplenty where this has been tried and been welcomed. It is unlikely to be expensive, it will invite stakeholder participation, it will model good stewarding and show faith in action.

At a purely pastoral level, the way we care for churchyards might say something not only about our care for the living, for relatives but also what we believe about the resurrection.

If the above has some new merit in relation to churchyards, the same could be true of church buildings. The invitation is to move from seeing the space as a gathering point of the faithful to an arena in which tradition is re-imagined, history and wisdom re-appropriated. And this for the whole community and not the community of faith only. When we consider that most of our churches remain closed during the week, the challenge to every church community is significant.

The potential outreach for buildings to be places of new story-telling, centres whose internal space (without deep violation of rules and regulations) can describe and facilitate new faith and new ministry calls for a better imagination and courage than has been shown in the last 50 years but this is perfectly achievable if the leadership is willing to be bold, courageous and to see re-describe how it understands its ministry.

Many will regard such a development as aberrant and urge an end to such revisionism. Exactly who will stand at the grave and weep the passing of something is not yet clear. We ought to ensure as Christian disciples it is not the very thing which brings lifeblood and energy to a world in need of good news.

If there are lessons for the church and a good reordering of life and energy, this might be true as well for much of society. It is unlikely to feature on any party manifesto nor clinch the win at the ballot box, but isn’t the re-discovery of neighbourliness one of the good outcomes of the pandemic? The example of communities working together for the sake of the vulnerable and disadvantaged? These are not ‘new’, they are ancient virtues which need to be constantly rediscovered and renewed in each generation.


But there is another ‘old’ to be rediscovered here and it centres on the renewed interest in pilgrimage. Pioneers of pilgrim theology have reminded us that the journey is as important as the arrival and that life is, by its nature, more transitory, changing and unfolding than the settled order which comes from habit and regular life pattern. The idea that we might never enjoy again anything which could be regarded as ‘normal’ will be deeply threatening to some but it might be true that discontinuous change and rapid shift deprives society and therefore the church of this reality forever. The witness of the church to this dynamic ought not to be understated because it will resonate with a society which, without any religious narrative, understands again that life is deeply uncertain and shifting. The Christian story however is that we do not journey alone. The invitation is to walk with God through ‘all the changing scenes of life’. This is to offer some anchorage on the journey or more appropriately some companionship and potentially some direction.

The witness of the church to this dynamic will need to be re-discovered by the church too. If buildings are offered as places of discovery and experimentation, the internal life of the church might need to be expressed more outside of these buildings in smaller groups, with new emphasis on the interface between a society largely indifferent to church if interested in values and the spiritual. Outside the structed stones, the church might learn to rediscover its pilgrim DNA and how it exists to share good news in word and deed. The experience of the pandemic has hinted at a church quite capable of being light-footed and quick to respond to change. The impetus for this will not be largely economic but the costs of heating and lighting buildings for relatively short periods of time is considerable.


In this paper I have sight to explore some of the dynamics which might be in play at this time. I have focused on the phrase ‘new normal’ and attempted to illustrate its shortcomings as a way of attempting to understand our current situation. I have suggested that the crisis highlighted and occasioned by Covid-19 invites a reappraisal of some virtues which could be regarded by some as ‘old fashioned’ but in the context of church life might be explored with wider application. The focus on church as a place in which these things might be best explored is a mark of confidence in the God who makes all things new and a church, always at its best when courageous and listening to the One who says, ‘Follow me’.

+Andrew Bangor

The Emperor’s Clothing and Snake Oil

Photo : Twitter – Chris Kubecka

Does social media democratize news and opinion? How can we respond?

The question, as sometimes put, is whether the development of new social media platforms has democratized news and comment in a way that was once the sole prerogative of daily newspapers or whether it has unleashed new outlets for banal, dangerous and vilifying commentary of the most extreme kinds.

The difficulty with posing the question is this way is that a binary choice offers a misleading sort of answer. ‘Both and’ sounds itself a banal response to the question even if more likely to be true than not.

Recent societal challenges have both exposed fractures and tensions which, played out in society whether via tabloid papers or most of the usual social media outlets, have both fuelled as well as exposed the way discussion, opinion, engagement and disagreement has taken a turn for the worse. There have been few occasions when the level of misogyny, fear, disparagement, hatred and weapons grade scorn have been more prevalent in the public square. We have discovered new ways to insult and abuse as never before (‘Snowflakes’, ‘Remoaners’ to name but two) and normalized the language of hate not only to demonize others but as a weapon with which to shame, silence and exile others from discourse.

Issues surrounding the freedom of speech in our universities continues to be problematic most recently seen in the debate surrounding trans people and some sectors of the feminist lobby which have shown that engagement is a challenging and complex matter in the way it allows perspectives to interact without requiring any effort from (at least initially) to listen, respect, understand or shift in their perspectives.

Added to this are moral considerations as well as legal and political ones. Put simply just because we can say something doesn’t mean we ought. The wise constraint of 1 Corinthians 6:12f seems worth mentioning alongside the more dramatic and sharp injunctions in Matthew 5 (vs 29-30).

Alongside the degrading of discourse there is a further threat to acknowledge. When Jesus said let your yes be yes and no be no, he must have assumed a basic core of identifiable truth was possible (Matthew 5:37). It is impossible to give any assent to something if that something is either so fluid to be beyond definition or so open to differentiation and opinion that it is entirely relativized and becomes little more than a matter of opinion.

And this of course is where that delicious and perfidious term ‘fake news’ steps in. As a tool in political discourse it was used before, during and after the last presidential elections in the USA but has found its way to these shores too. Like the sale of snake oil in another period when facts can be consistently ignored, it is not only the distorting and exchange of one category of meaning for another, it is the noxious and destructive effect on a society.

James O’Brien in ‘How to be right in a world gone wrong’ exposes how widespread misperceptions and idiocies abound even when challenged. The psychology of this is as fascinating as it is disturbing. The occasions when callers, faced with the vacuity of their own positions and statements actually change and admit to new perspective, is fewer than we might like to hope. In truth, it suggests the issue is not an inability to shift in thinking but unwillingness. It could be of course that beyond the gladiatorial environments of a call-in show against one of the sharpest minds in broadcasting, that quieter reflection takes place. It would be step of faith to believe this.

So how (to take O’Brien’s book title) should we do right in a world gone wrong? The first port of call is to know your stuff. The Emperor duped into nakedness was utterly content until unmasked and the truth of his precarious situation pointed out to him. The conspiracy of those who aided and abetted the lie nicely adds to the dynamic: someone needs to know whether the claim to Calvin Klein is an illusion or really is a nice piece of kit.

Secondly, there is a treasured Christian tradition of what is now called ‘calling out’. It means naming the truth. The religious take is found in the prophetic traditions and wisdom sayings where lies and are uncovered and what is hidden is made visible. Jesus was particularly good at exposing what was motivating and driving engagement opposed to the stated reasons.

Thirdly, there is the call to act. The mysterious poster bandit who replaced a racist poster with a poster of a cat is a neat example of slightly mocking and exposing the racism as well as removing it. Holy alternatives or acts of deletion can be more powerful expressions of protest and Kingdom grace than words alone.

Fourth, cultivate the art of listening well. Presenting issues and engagement are not always the most motivating of all. Getting behind the words is hard through social media platforms but an admitted and acknowledged honesty can at least allow the ante to drop a few levels.

Fifth, learn to offer alternative narratives. The Christian take on life is that change is possible with God. Countering the hatred and despoiling commentary is only as good as an alternative which offers something of Christ and goodness.

Social science has suggested that as technology increases, we can lose the capacity to manage and operate well within a new and rapidly shifting environment. The ability to develop and progress knowledge is outstripping a capacity to handle it well. In turn, crafting a deep wisdom fit for the ages seems more important than ever.

+Andrew Bangor

Dillad yr Ymerawdwr ac Oel Nadroedd

Llun : Twitter – Chris Kubecka

Ydy cyfryngau cymdeithasol yn democrateiddio newyddion a barn? Sut ddylen ni ymateb?

Y cwestiwn, fel y’i gofynnir weithiau, ydy p’un ai fod datblygiad llwyfannau cyfryngau cymdeithasol newydd wedi democrateiddio newyddion a barn mewn ffordd a fu unwaith yn eiddo llwyr i’r papurau dyddiol, yntau wedi agor y drysau i fynegiant ystrydebol, peryglus ac enllibus o’r math mwyaf eithafol.

Yr anhawster gyda gosod y cwestiwn yn y modd yma trwy or-symleiddio’r dewis rhwng dau yn gallu arwain at ateb braidd yn gamarweiniol. Mae ‘y ddau’ yn edrych ynddo’i hun fel ateb ystrydebol i’r cwestiwn, er ei fod yn fwy tebygol o fod yn wir na pheidio.   

Mae newidiadau cymdeithasol diweddar wedi amlygu rhwygiadau a thensiynau sydd, o’u mynegi yn y gymdeithas, p’un ai trwy’r papurau tabloid neu’r rhan fwyaf o’r cyfryngau cymdeithasol arferol, wedi hyrwyddo yn ogystal ag amlygu’r modd y mae trafodaeth, barn a sylwadau, ymgysylltu ac anghytundeb wedi dirywio a gwaethygu. Prin y cafwyd cyfnod lle gwelwyd lefelau amarch at ferched, ofn, gwawd, casineb a dirmyg eithafol wedi bod yn fwy amlwg yng nghylchoedd cyhoeddus. Rydyn ni wedi darganfod ffyrdd newydd o sarhau a dilorni pobl i’r graddau nas profwyd o’r blaen (‘Snowflakes’ a ‘Remoaners’ i enwi ond dau) a normaleiddio geirfa casineb, nid yn unig er mwyn pardduo eraill ond fel arf i gywilyddio, cau cegau ac eithrio eraill o’r drafodaeth.

Mae materion yn ymwneud â rhyddid barn yn ein prifysgolion yn parhau i fod yn broblem, pwnc a ddaeth i’r amlwg yn fwy diweddar yn y ddadl ynghylch pobl traws a rhai sectorau o’r lobi ffeministiaeth, sydd wedi dangos bod ymgysylltu yn fater heriol a chymhleth yn y modd mae’n caniatáu safbwyntiau i ryngweithio heb fod angen unrhyw ymdrech ar ran unrhyw un (o leiaf ar y dechrau) i wrando ar, parchu, deall neu newid safbwyntiau.

Ychwanegwch at hyn yr ystyriaethau moesol, yn ogystal â’r rhai cyfreithiol a gwleidyddol. Yn syml, dydy’r ffaith ein bod ni’n cael dweud rhywbeth ddim yn golygu y dylen ni ddweud unrhyw beth. Mae’n werth crybwyll y doethineb sydd i’w gael yn 1 Corinthiaid 6:12f, ochr yn ochr â’r gorchmynion mwy dramatig a thrawiadol ym Mathew 5 (ad. 29-30).

Ochr yn ochr â’r diraddio sydd ar drafodaeth, ceir bygythiad pellach i gydnabod. Pan ddywedodd Iesu y dylai eich ‘ie’ olygu ‘ie’ a’ch ‘na’ olygu ‘na’, mae’n rhaid ei fod yn cymryd yn ganiataol fod yna graidd sylfaenol o wirionedd cydnabyddedig yn bosib (Mathew 5:37). Mae hi’n amhosib cydsynio â rhywbeth os ydy’r rhywbeth hwn un ai’n rhy hyblyg i’w ddiffinio neu mor agored i wahaniaethiad a barn fel ei fod wedi’i gymaroli’n llwyr, gan ddiweddu’n fawr mwy na mater o farn.

Ac wrth gwrs, dyma o le daw’r ymadrodd bachog a thwyllodrus ‘ffug-newyddion – fake news’ i’r adwy. Fe’i defnyddiwyd fel offeryn yn yr ymddiddan gwleidyddol cyn, yn ystod ac wedi’r etholiadau arlywyddol diwethaf yn yr Unol Daleithiau ond bellach, mae wedi ffeindio’i ffordd i bob twll a chornel ein byd. Debyg i werthiant oel nadroedd mewn cyfnod arall pan ellir anwybyddu ffeithiau’n gyson, nid yn unig mae wedi arwain at ystumio a chyfnewid un categori ystyr am un arall, mae wrthi’n creu effaith atgas a dinistriol ar gymdeithas.

Mae James O’Brien yn ‘How to be right in a world gone wrong yn codi cwr y llen ar ba mor gyffredin mae camganfyddiadau a haeriadau gwirion yn cael eu derbyn a’u lledu, hyd yn oed o gael eu herio. Mae seicoleg hyn i gyd mor ddiddorol ag y mae’n frawychus. Mae’r achlysuron lle mae’r galwr, wedi’i wynebu â gwacter ei ddadleuon a’i ddatganiadau, yn newid ac yn cydnabod persbectif newydd, yn llai na’r hyn a obeithiwn. Mewn gwirionedd, mae’n awgrymu nad yr anallu i newid meddwl ydy’r broblem ond, yn hytrach, amharodrwydd. Efallai, y tu hwnt i ffiniau amgylchedd talwrn benben y sioe ffonio-i-mewn, a hynny yn wyneb un o feddyliau mwyaf praff y byd darlledu cyfoes, bod myfyrio tawel yn digwydd. Cam o ffydd fyddai credu mai hynny sy’n digwydd.   

Felly, sut (i ddefnyddio teitl llyfr O’Brien) ddylen ni wneud yr hyn sy’n iawn mewn byd sydd o chwith? Y cam cyntaf ydy gwybod eich stwff. Roedd yr Ymerawdwr, a gafodd ei dwyllo i baredio’n ddiddillad, yn gwbl ddiarwybod a bodlon ei fyd hyd nes i eraill dynnu ei sylw at yr hyn a oedd yn amlwg i bawb ac iddo fo sylweddoli gwirionedd noeth ei sefyllfa. Mae cynllwyn y rhai fu’n hybu ac yn bwydo’r celwydd yn ychwanegu’n ddestlus at y ddeinamig: mae angen i rywun wybod p’un ai bod yr honiad am Calvin Klein yn rhith neu ei fod yn ddilledyn o safon go iawn.

Yn ail, mae traddodiad a goleddir gan Gristnogion, sef ‘galw allan’. Mae’n golygu enwi’r gwirionedd. Mae wedi’i wreiddio yn y traddodiadau proffwydol a’r dywediadau o ddoethineb lle mae celwyddau’n cael eu gorfodi i olau dydd a’r hyn sy’n gudd yn dod i’r amlwg. Roedd Iesu’n arbennig o dda am ddwyn sylw at yr hyn a oedd yn ysgogi ac yn gyrru’r ymatebion a oedd yn groes i’r rhesymau a nodwyd.  

Yn drydydd,  ceir yr alwad i weithredu. Mae’r lleidr anweledig a ddisodlodd poster hiliol gyda phoster o gath yn enghraifft fach dda o ddinoethi a gwatwar yr hiliaeth, yn ogystal â’i symud hefyd. Gall ddatrysiadau Cristnogol neu weithredoedd o ddileu fod yn fynegiant mwy pwerus o brotest a gras y Deyrnas na geiriau yn unig.

Yn bedwerydd, ceisiwch feithrin y ddawn o wrando’n dda. Dydy cyflwyno materion ac ymgysylltu ddim bob amser y ffyrdd mwyaf ysgogol. Mae ceisio dal pen rheswm yn galed trwy lwyfannau’r cyfryngau cymdeithasol ond fe all cydnabod a chyfaddef yn onest o leiaf ganiatáu lleihau’r lefelau o daflu baw.  

Yn bumed, dysgwch i gynnig naratifau eraill. Gwedd y Gristion ar fywyd ydy fod newid yn bosib gyda Duw. Dydy gwrthweithio’r sylwadau dinistriol a’r araith o gasineb ddim ond cystal â dewis amgen sy’n cynnig rhywbeth o Grist a daioni.  

Mae gwyddor gymdeithasol yn awgrymu, wrth i dechnoleg ddatblygu, y gallen ni golli’r gallu i reoli a gweithredu’n dda oddi fewn i amgylchfyd newydd sy’n gynyddol newid o flaen ein llygaid. Mae’r gallu i ddatblygu a chynyddu gwybodaeth yn datblygu’n gynt na’r gallu i ymdopi a delio â fo. Yn ei dro, mae llunio doethineb dyfnach sy’n addas i bob oes yn ymddangos yn fwy pwysig nag erioed.

+Andrew Bangor

Addoliad : Garawys 5 – Lent 5


Gwn nad ydym yn gallu bod yn ein hadeiladau eglwys ar hyn o bryd, ond nid yw hynny’n golygu bod y gwaith addoli – moli Duw – hefyd yn dod i ben.

Gallwn addoli – moli Duw – unrhyw le, ar unrhyw adeg, felly lawrlwythwch a defnyddiwch yr addoliad y mae’r Esgobaeth yn ei ddarparu.

Cliciwch y ddolen hon i fynd i’r dudalen we lle byddwch chi’n dod o hyd i wasanaeth, y darlleniadau ac anerchiad a gweddïau gennyf ar ffurf fideo.

Mae’n Sul y Dioddefaint, mae’r Wythnos Sanctaidd yn agosáu. Gadewch inni foli Duw!

I know that we are not able to be in our church buildings at the moment, but that does not mean that the work of worship – praising God – also comes to an end.

We can worship – praise God – anywhere, at any time, so please do download and use the worship which the Diocese is providing.

Click this link to go to the webpage where you will find a service, the readings and an address and some prayers from me in video form.

It’s Passion Sunday, Holy Week draws nearer. Let us praise God!

Covid 19 ☩ 17-03-2020


Neges oddi wrth Esgob Andy heddiw

Mae’r cyhoeddiad neithiwr gan y Prif Weinidog wedi pwysleisio difrifoldeb y sefyllfa sy’n ein hwynebu. Mae hefyd wedi darparu gwybodaeth newydd ar gyfer yr Eglwys y mae angen ei ddadansoddi ac y bydd angen ei adlewyrchu yn ein harferion a’n hymddygiad. Mae’n amserol bod cyfarfodydd yn cael eu cynnal yn y dalaith heddiw i baratoi canllawiau newydd.

A gaf ofyn am eich gweddïau dros yr Esgobion ac eraill a fydd yn ymgynghori ar ran yr Eglwys yng Nghymru heddiw – am ddoethineb a dirnadaeth wrth wneud penderfyniadau.

A gaf ofyn hefyd am eich hamynedd wrth i ganllawiau newydd gael eu cadarnhau a’u cylchredeg. Bydd llawer i’w ennill o allu siarad â mesur o bendatrwydd yn y dyddiau nesaf, a sicrhau ein bod yn glir ac yn gyson yn ein dweud a’n harfer.

A gaf yn arbennig eich annog i ofalu amdanoch eich hun a’ch teuluoedd wrth i chi weinidogaethu i’ch cymunedau, a sicrhau bod eich timau gweinidogaeth yn cymryd yr un gofal. Rhaid inni fod yn barod dros yr wythnosau nesaf i fod ochr yn ochr â’r rhai yn ein cymunedau a fydd yn bryderus, mewn poen ac mewn angen. Ond bydd angen i ni hefyd ddilyn arweiniad eglwysig a llywodraethol, rheoli risg, a gweithredu gyda doethineb a dirnadaeth.

Yn olaf, mae gennyf gais am gymorth. Os ydych wedi paratoi gweddïau neu ddeunydd ysbrydol arall i’w gylchredeg ar yr adeg hon, a gaf ofyn ichi anfon copi at Siôn, gan fy mod yn gobeithio y byddwn yn gallu paratoi, casglu a rhannu deunydd ysbrydol yn y ddwy iaith dros y dyddiau nesaf.

Rwy’n rhagweld ysgrifennu eto yfory, ac ynghynt na hynny os yw’n bosibl, i roi’r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf ichi wrth i bethau ddatblygu.

A message from Bishop Andy today

Yesterday evening’s announcement from the Prime Minister has emphasised the seriousness of this situation we face. It has also provided the Church with new information that needs to be digested and will need to be reflected in our practice. It is timely that meetings are taking place in the province today to prepare new guidance.

May I ask for your prayers for the Bishops and others who will be conferring on behalf of the Church in Wales today – for wisdom and discernment in their decision-making.

May I also ask for your patience as new guidance is confirmed and circulated. There will be much to be gained from being able to speak with confidence in these coming days, and to ensure that we are clear and consistent in our pronouncements and our practice.

May I, in particular, urge you to take care of yourselves and your families as you minister to your communities, and to ensure that your ministry teams take the same care. We must be ready over these coming weeks to be alongside those in our communities who will be anxious, in pain and in need. But we will also need to follow church and governmental guidance, to manage risk, and to act with wisdom and judgement.

Finally, a request. If you have prepared prayers or other spiritual material for circulation at this time, may I ask you to send a copy to Siôn, as I hope that we will be able to prepare, gather and share translated spiritual material over coming days.

I anticipate writing again tomorrow, and sooner if possible, to keep you informed as the situation develops.

The Coming


Mae ‘The Coming‘, gan y Cymro R.S. Thomas – a oedd yn fardd ac offeiriad – yn drosiad dwfn o ymgnawdoliad Iesu, ac eto mae’n siarad â’n sefyllfa ni heddiw.

Yn y gerdd mae’r geiriau’n creu cymysgedd gref o liwiau gweledol i adrodd stori Iesu’n dod yn un ohonom ni.

Fel llawer o’n carolau plygain Cymreig, sy’n cyfeirio at ddigwyddiadau Dydd Gwener y Groglith gymaint â Dydd Nadolig, mae’r gerdd yn cynnig delwedd o’r Groes fel coeden foel ar Galfaria.

Wrth ddychmygu’r berthynas rhwng Duw Dad a Duw’r Mab, mae’r gerdd yn sôn am anghyfannedd, poen ac awydd Iesu i ddod i’n hachub ni, bobl Dduw.

Rwy’n gweddïo bydd y gerdd hon yn siarad â chi, fel y mae i mi.

☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩ ☩

The Coming, by the Welsh preist-poet, R.S. Thomas, is a profound rendering of the incarnation of Jesus, yet it speaks of our situation today.

It is a poem whose words create a strong mix of visual colour to tell the story of Jesus becoming one of us.

Like many of our Welsh plygain carols, which refer to the events of Good Friday as much as Christmas Day, the poem offers an image of the Cross as a bare tree on Calvary.

In imagining the relationship between God the Father and God the Son, the poem speaks of desolation, pain and Jesus desire to come to save us, God’s people.

I pray that this poem speaks to you, as it does to me.

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