Kindly Light

Pharos -Roman lighthouse by Saxon Church

Pharos -Roman lighthouse by Saxon Church

As I said to my wife, the Autumn changing of the hour is disorienting, especially when the evening draws in, and even more so when away from  home, as we now are.

No such meddling with the clocks in Roman times; who had clocks? Not the sailors making for Dubris, the town we call Dover, but they would have sought the beacon fire at the lighthouse where the castle now is. They could orient themselves by its light.

The church of Saint Mary – we just see the West end in this picture – is indeed oriented. It looks to the East, seeing the sunrise as a powerful reminder of the Second Coming of the risen Lord.

Early one morning he did indeed appear by a fire to a boatload of sailors; he fed them and commissioned their captain to feed his lambs and his sheep. John 21.

The lighthouses along the coast were built for those in peril on the sea, to guide them home in safety. Arthur Ransome’s Peter Duck and his We Didn’t Mean to Go to Sea both engage the reader to understand their work.

May we understand how others have lit our way, and indeed ‘let our little light shine.’


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