Posted by: John Brace | 25th December 2011

Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas to all this blog’s readers. Apart from very sporadic updates, this blog will resume in the New Year (2012) as I’m in need of a holiday! Leonora will deal with matters in my absence.

I hope everyone enjoys the festive season.

Last week I played carols with people from St. James at two local residential/nursing homes, Oakdene in Tollemache Road (where one of our neighbours works) and Birkenhead Grange in Challis Street.

Since Rev Mansfield came to St. James Church, it’s become a bit of an annual tradition, but it’s time for me to spend time with family and enjoy a bit of rest and relaxation. One thing about playing at such places, is it makes you count your blessings. Religion is an unusual topic on this blog, but an important part of life in this country.

I should really write about it more often and put into use what I learned when I was a student on its effect on culture and behaviour.  There’s a part of me in politics that tends to do things partly based on my Catholic background and beliefs, which of course in politics where Catholics are in a minority gets me into trouble. Yet I have a foot in both denominations as my father is an Anglican.

There should be more harmony and respect between the two denominations Catholic and Church of England in this country though and less antipathy. Religious divides locally may not be as severe as in nearby Northern Ireland, but certain things sadden me when they work locally against ecumenism.

Moving back to political matters, what has struck me is how as The Worshipful Moira McLaughlin being Mayor this year that this has meant her chaplain Rev Bernard McConnell addressing Council meetings with prayers and readings. Religion and belief is still a powerful force in today’s society.