20 July 2018 – Howard’s Blog – “We are Waiting”

The picture shows a gift of a painting being given to Navigators of Faith on Wednesday from The Open Gate Community on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne. We are accompanied by the Bishop of Berwick, Rt Rev Mark Tanner.

 The painting is a beautiful and atmospheric painting of ‘The Pilgrim’s Way’, that pathway across the causeway from the mainland to Lindisfarne that becomes accessible to be travelled by pilgrims twice a day when the tide is low. The artist is calling the viewer to think of that pilgrim journey we all take as we come closer to God. However we must not get too attached to the painting as we are merely transporting it. We must now pass it on. We received the painting in order to take it to Chelmsford Diocese. We must get it to Mersea on Thursday in a week’s time.

 Quite how we are to do this is not clear today.

 Yesterday, at the end of a busy day re-setting the fuel pump and recharging batteries, the starter motor failed. Poor Mervyn McGowan has been with us since Monday and has not seen any action on the high seas and he is keen to get out to sea.

 I sense that the Pilgrim’s Way is like this….a pathway through the sea that symbolises both times of moving and times of waiting. It is like the path Moses took through the Red Sea, walking on dry land through the sea. Following Christ is to walk the Pilgrim’s Way. It was the way taken by the Celtic saints. Like the picture we now carry, this pathway is well marked out but it is often inaccessible. It is a route that at times cannot be made by pilgrims because the tide is high but at other times it is a route that is well trodden. Today we stand at the edge of the sea awaiting for the tide to fall so that we might tread the sea paths. This is a time of waiting.