Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Dear Parents, Caregivers and Friends of St Mary’s School,
It is hard to believe that we are already in week ten of the term. As we come to the end of the season of  Lent it is perhaps a good time to focus on what we have and how lucky our lot is, especially when com-pared to those who live in other less hospitable parts of the world.
I am reading a book at the moment written by the British survival expert Bear Grylls. It is entitled ‘True Grit” and it looks at a number of amazing survival stories.
The underlying theme is that the strongest factor we have that helps people to survive from hazardous
situations is their determination and will to live. But the other key theme is that to survive we really need so little, yet we continually put pressure on ourselves by wanting newer and bigger and better consumer items.
Lent is a time for us to consider what is really important. What do we really need to not just survive but to be content. The old prayer the Desiderata says “If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.”
To be content, we need to know ourselves well and to know what we value and what we want to achieve.
We have to be guarded about people telling us what we want or need e.g. you simply must have a new car, a bigger T.V. and trip to London. While all of these things are nice, don’t let need be confused with want. In Genesis the serpent tempts Adam and Eve by offering not what they need but by telling them what they want. Our needs to survive are simple: food, water, clothing, shelter and warmth. Our wants are too numerous to list. The people in the Solomon Islands as they struggle to survive want very little but their needs are the same as ours.
So as we come to the end of Lent please remember the three pillars of lent: Prayer, alms giving and
fasting, and keep the people who are struggling to simply survive, in your hearts.
Have a great week
Mike Brosnahan

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