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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Saturday, December 21, 2002
    I'm loving angels instead
    Writing the Christmas Eve midnight sermon is one of the more challenging tasks of the season. Talking in a bigger, more diverse congregation than usual, it's the one sermon of the year for some folks there. Ought to be special for their sake. I'd hoped to complete the task today but I'm nowhere near.

    I'm onside with the shepherds and exploring the theme of listening to angels, provoked by a refrain in Cloth for the Cradle: WE SUSPECT ANGELS / AND DISBELIEVE GOOD NEWS. Do we?

    So I've been on a journey of discovery, beginning with Antony Gormley's wonderful Angel of the North and the book (Making an Angel) which tells the story of its construction, with excellent meditations and observations by the likes of Iain Sinclair, Beatrice Campbell and Gormley himself. I then flew off into the angel-filled world of William Blake and somehow took in Robbie Williams en-route to a piece in this month's Planet in which photographer Bernard Mitchell goes in search of angels beginning, aptly, in the Angel pub, Llanidloes.

    They're everywhere, angels. Just need to make sense of what they're on about.