Thought for the Day by Gill Griggs (St Chad’s)
There is a debate taking place in our society about compulsory vaccination for people working in care homes. On the one hand are those who insist that it should be purely a matter of individual choice and that no-one should be forced to do things which they are reluctant. On the other hand are those who are worried that allowing un-vaccinated staff into care homes risks infecting old and vulnerable residents; The Government has made clear that they have not yet made up their minds.
This feels like the issue of individualism versus solidarity. Should personal freedom be the over-riding principle? Of course we all like our freedom to do what we want, but should that freedom only be allowed if the exercise of our freedom does not injure others. In many spheres, like the wearing of seat-belts, we seem to have agreed that it is right to insist that all car drivers are belted.
We are reminded of this delicate balance of individuality and freedom when we consider what St Paul is telling us about our solidarity in the passage for today from Romans, Chapter 5. He is suggesting that we are united with Adam in his original disobedience. This not to say that we are responsible for what the mythical Adam is alleged to have done.; but that we are one with Adam; we are not just like him in wanting our own way, but that this is a universal inclination; in that way, we have solidarity with Adam.
But now that Christ has come amongst us, died for us, and been raised to the new life, we have the possibility of being one with Christ. Not just our allegiance but our whole being is one with Him. This is an idea that we need to reflect on. One thing that is to our advantage during this past year, is that we have time to sit and think; and perhaps to come to some conclusions,.
In a recent edition of The Observer there were 2 bullet points that caught my attention. One was the offer of grants to stricken shops and pubs; the other was to fears in the NHS that its pleas for more cash will be ignored. Both of these are important decision on which we ought to have an opinion. The more we work at these bullet points, we realize that we all have an opportunity to sit and think, and reach conclusions, and engage in useful conversation. Perhaps when the pandemic started, it may be that it was something we feared. But, by now, people may adjusted to the quietness.
Here is a poem for Spring from ‘Listen to Love’, which might stimulate our thinking:-
In coming from winter to Spring, love suffers. But soon its suffering is turned into blossoms and bursting grass-green joy, warm air and rainbows. It is young and free and above all alive.
Springtime is Easter when love rises from the earth, never again to be broken or destroyed.
Love in Spring is buttoned and belted, ready and waiting to meet life,it is eager to try new things.
If Easter love is hurt, it forgives. If love in Spring does any harm, it is quick to set things right again
Spring love is irresistible and radiant. Listen to love in Spring as it grows.