February Column: Thought for the Month

Published on: 07 Feb 2013

February Column: Thought for the Month

with the Reverend Simon Howell, Team Vicar, Keynsham Parish 

Did the Les Mis film live up to your expectations? Was it as good as the 2011 Wellsway School production? Did you get through it without crying?

When I looked around the Longwell Green Vue cinema after the showing my family saw, it was difficult to see anyone not rubbing their eyes with tissues – and quite a few were complete emotional wrecks! 

The close of the production is magnificent isn’t it? In the film, as Jean Valjean passes from this world to the next, the camera pans up and we get a glimpse of another world beyond this one.

We see again the barricade that was the scene of so much loss of life, but this time it is transfigured into a towering structure that can hold thousands of passionate men and women singing a colossal, rapturous version of “Do you hear the people sing?” It is totally believable that these impassioned lives could not be stopped by death – death looked puny in the face of such a force of love.

When Christians share bread and wine at Holy Communion, we speak of Jesus Christ as he who, “with a love stronger than death, opened wide his arms upon the cross”. We believe the source of love’s victory over everything that destroys life – including death – is found in a man “giving up his life for his friends” on a cross outside Jerusalem.

To drink from this source, is to find the strength to live truly passionate lives – lives of which we can be proud.

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