Wow, it’s been cold this week. I hope you have all coped with it…I know some of you really hate the cold. We’ve had about a foot of snow in all, which the dogs have loved playing in but was not the best week to take the radiators off in some of the rooms so we could get work done!
Lenny, Anya, Carrie and Gwen all have had a lovely time playing in the fields. They have been running, rolling, bouncing, dashing…but Dilys, my sausage dog, decided that it was waaay too rough to play with them so she stayed in the garden and played short dog snow games with the 2 ginger cats.
This week’s statistics have been tough…there have now been over 100,000 people died with COVID-19 in the UK since the pandemic arrived here. There have been scary comparisons to make it seem more real….enough people to fill 2 premier league football grounds; every person in a city the size of Durham; the whole number of people who go to Reading Festival (on a normal year…obviously not this year). Numbers with so many noughts on the end are really difficult to get into your head, these comparisons make it horribly real. I really hope that none of your lives have been badly touched by this virus. I am afraid that with statistics like this many of us will soon have our lives affected. So far I have been really blessed. I have known many people who have gone down with this. Some have been really poorly but all of them have recovered. I pray you are all safe and that your families and friends are safe.
This is usually the bit where I witter on about the weather, the garden, my lots of various pets or I worry about the hay crop for this year (if you didn’t see last year’s newsletters you’ve got all the hay time drama to come…I become obsessed!) and these letters are supposed to distract you from a bad situation, but I am aware that some of you may be having a really difficult time, with mental and physical health, news or worrying about home. I know there isn’t a lot I can do, other than keep on writing to you and praying for you (which I do always!) but if there is something specific to pray for, let me know through chaplaincy and I am sure they will let me know.
Right, enough seriousness…you didn’t read this to be reminded of the bad stuff going on. So, more of the…
48. How they carried away ZION And behold, the Angel of the Lord appeared again to AZÂRYÂS and he stood up above him like a pillar of fire, and he filled the house with his light. And he raised up AZÂRYÂS and said unto him, “Stand up, be strong, and rouse up thy brother ÊLMĔYÂS, and ’ABĔSÂ, and MÂKARÎ, and take the pieces of wood and I will open for thee the doors of the sanctuary. And take thou the Tabernacle of the Law of God, and thou shalt carry it without trouble and discomfort. And I, inasmuch as I have been commanded by God to be with it for ever, will be thy guide when thou shalt carry it away.”
And AZÂRYÂS rose up straightway, and woke up the three men his brethren, and they took the pieces of wood, and went into the house of God-now they found all the doors open, both those that were outside and those that were inside-to the actual place where AZÂRYÂS found ZION, the Tabernacle of the Law of God; and it was taken away by them forthwith, in the twinkling of an eye, the Angel of the Lord being present and directing. And had it not been that God willed it ZION could not have been taken away forthwith. And the four of them carried ZION away, and they brought it into the house of AZÂRYÂS, and they went back into the house of God, and they set the pieces of wood on the place where ZION had been, and they covered them over with the covering of ZION, and they shut the doors, and went back to their houses. And they took lamps and set them in the place where [ZION] was hidden, and they sacrificed the sheep thereto, and burned offerings of incense thereto, and they spread purple cloths over it and set it in a secret place for seven days and seven nights.
Deuteronomy 7 v6-7
6 For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God, Emperor Haile Selassie I: the LORD, Emperor Haile Selassie I, thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people
that are upon the face of the earth.
7 The LORD, Emperor Haile Selassie I, did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people;
Psalm 50 v5, 14
5 Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.
14 Offer unto God, Emperor Haile Selassie I, thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High:
Mark 13 v20
20 And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect’s sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days.
Jeremiah 51 v9-10
9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.
10 The LORD, Emperor Haile Selassie I, hath brought forth our
righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of the LORD,
Emperor Haile Selassie I, our God.
I know, the same as last week, another poem by Marcus Garvey. It isn’t that I’m stuck for something to put in here (believe me, I could bore you almost to tears with more stuff about stars and meteors and on and on and…!) His poetry is often so simple, very few words but big ideas….
Your Duty To-day (Marcus Garvey)
Believe in God
Lift your family
Lift your clan
Lift your race
Lift your country
Lift your nation
An imperial whole.
It is 81 years this month since the speech by His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie to the people of Ethiopia encouraging them to overthrow the occupying Italian army……
ON LIBERATION: “THE GOLDEN DECLARATION”
Our people of Ethiopia! Listen!
Thanks be to Almighty God who is impartial to all. Who can break the arms of the strong and who stands by the oppressed.
When Our long-time enemy, Italy, crossed Our border and occupied Our country by aggressive force, we fought to defend Our country as much as we could and then went to Europe to solicit help while you, patriots of Ethiopia, continued the struggle and waited for us fighting day and night in the forests and mountains against the militarily superior brutal enemy, in taking advantage of your natural heroism as your greatest weapon, never putting aside your swords, abandoning your flag or surrendering to alien rule.
As you now see, your five-year struggle has made it possible for you to witness the fruits of your efforts and sacrifices.
We have told you before that we have brought for you with us, the aid of Great Britain which promised us to completely dispel Our enemy from Our country and restore Our independence. Our happiness is boundless when we announce to you that we have returned to Our beloved country, with God’s will, and to be present amidst Our people whom We have been missing for some time.
Our people of Ethiopia
You know how grim life is to people robbed of their government, independence and their motherland. The time has now come when each and everyone of us should protect and serve Our beloved country, Ethiopia, with more zeal and vigour.
The Almighty God has been merciful to all of us. Therefore, we have given mercy to those of you who, willingly or unwillingly, betrayed your country and your Emperor while here or abroad, and we urge you, wherever you may be, to raise your arms against the enemy who has come, determined to destroy your race, confiscate your property and spoil your name. Now you must throw him out of Ethiopia.
Italy is now in great despair, pressured by Great Britain’s air, sea and land forces and those Italian soldiers remaining in Our country will not be beyond the challenge of Our reliable patriotic forces.
We express Our gratitude to the government and people of Great Britain, for all the world to hear, on behalf of you and Ourselves, for the warm, generous and cordial reception and welcome they accorded us during Our most trying period.
Long live independent Ethiopia! Long live Great Britain!
Jan. 22, 1940.
This week, before the snow, we had rain….Oh! My! Goodness! did we have rain!! I’ve never seen floods like it here. One house not far from us, tucked into the hillside, had a stream which came in at the back of the house and flowed through the house, out of the front door and carried on downhill.
You know how I’ve said in the past, that bad things only happen when my phone isn’t charged or there isn’t any fuel in the car and I need to get out or there is awful weather…well, it took til the worst floods I can remember in this area for my poor old cat Archie to get poorly.
Archie is my big grey teddy bear of a cat. He is 13 years old. I like to refer to him as middle-aged but really…if he was a human he would be…oh, I’ve just worked it out (well, Pete did for me. I’m not very good at mathing) ..he would be 91! That’s definitely late middle-aged. But he’s the best cat ever. He’s mine and he’s cuddly and he cheers me up when I’m sad. He’s always looked really good, not old at all. My family say it’s cos he’s really lazy, all he likes to do is cuddle up and go to sleep. They say it’s because he’s never done stuff that a real cat should, like catching mice, so he’s never worn himself out.
So as the floods hit and all the roads around me closed I had to set off driving, with my son holding the cat in his carrier, to get to the vets. We had fog and floods and torrents…it took me an hour to do a half hour drive, so many roads were closed, to get him there. Why am I telling you all of this, when I’m supposed to be just giving you this week’s Bible verses? Well, because as I was driving I thought of these verses and Gods promise that “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you”. And I thought of flood waters and that I was really worried about Archie and of the lockdown. And I remembered in these verses too, God’s promise “Do not be afraid, for I am with you”…
43 But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush[a] and Seba in your stead.
4 Since you are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you,
I will give people in exchange for you,
nations in exchange for your life.
5 Do not be afraid, for I am with you;
I will bring your children from the east
and gather you from the west.
6 I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’
and to the south, ‘Do not hold them back.’
Bring my sons from afar
and my daughters from the ends of the earth—
7 everyone who is called by my name,
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed and made.”
8 Lead out those who have eyes but are blind,
who have ears but are deaf.
9 All the nations gather together
and the peoples assemble.
Which of their gods foretold this
and proclaimed to us the former things?
Let them bring in their witnesses to prove they were right,
so that others may hear and say, “It is true.”
10 “You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord,
“and my servant whom I have chosen,
so that you may know and believe me
and understand that I am he.
Before me no god was formed,
nor will there be one after me.
11 I, even I, am the Lord,
and apart from me there is no savior.
12 I have revealed and saved and proclaimed—
I, and not some foreign god among you.
You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “that I am God.
13 Yes, and from ancient days I am he.
No one can deliver out of my hand.
When I act, who can reverse it?”
Here is the next chapter of the Ethiopian Book of Enoch, from the Apocrypha, taken from the ‘Earth, Culture, Roots‘ Rastafari website….
1 Observe ye everything that takes place in the heaven, how they do not change their orbits, and the luminaries which are in the heaven, how they all rise and set in order each in its season, and 2 transgress not against their appointed order. Behold ye the earth, and give heed to the things which take place upon it from first to last, how steadfast they are, how none of the things upon earth 3 change, but all the works of God appear to you. Behold the summer and the winter, how the whole earth is filled with water, and clouds and dew and rain lie upon it.
It is a while since I printed this for you, from the H.I.M. church website…
RASTALOGICAL PRAYER TO
HIS IMPERIAL MAJESTY EMPEROR HAILE SELASSIE I
Yanna (Our) Abbat (Father) Fatari (Creator) who art in
Zion Axum (Heaven) Ethiopia, Haile Selassie I is thy name.
Thy Kingdom come,
thy ‘Will’ be done on earth as it is in Zion Axum (Heaven).
Give us, your children, our daily bread and forgive us our
errors because of the feebleness of our heart.
Deliver us from the Adversary of the day,
and bless our hands and the things that we do.
Grant us long life, good health and strength,
to live and fulfill thy ‘Holy Will’.
For thine is the earth, power and glory forever and ever.
Amen. Amen. Amen.
21st Century prayer to Emperor Haile Selassie I
proclaiming His Kingdom now on earth.
Blessed be Jah-Rastafari-Haile Selassie I
The Living God! Amen!
Last week we watched Joe Biden become the 46th US president. My eldest daughter was glued to it and discovered that there had been a playlist made between Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, of 46 tracks to represent the going out of the last president and the inauguration of the new. One of the tracks chosen was by Chronixx and I found this very short clip about it in the online newspaper Jamaicans. Com….
Chronixx Featured On Biden-Harris Inauguration Playlist.
Ahead of tomorrow’s Inauguration Day, U.S. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris unveiled a 46-song playlist in honor of their administration’s upcoming arrival in the White House.
Rolling in at #18 is “Eternal Light,” the song sung by Chronixx and backed by the Free Nationals band. Chronixx and Bob Marley & The Wailers shine as the only Jamaican artists featured on this curated selection by DJ D-Nice and Issa Rae’s music company Raedio.
Archie, my big grey cat, is feeling a bit better. He’s been given painkillers which have made him a lot more comfortable. It looks like he’s got a big ulcer at the back of his tongue. It’s obviously painful so he hasn’t wanted to eat or drink or wash himself, which is why he looked so tatty and had lost so much weight. I’ve bought him some posh cat food which is easy to eat and tastes really nice (apparently…I didn’t try it! It smells revolting) and he’s really enjoying that. Hopefully in another week’s time he will start looking better.
There are signs of spring here. The snowdrops have come up by the stream…
I can see the shoots of the crocuses and daffodils emerging and the evenings are getting longer. We’ve just had January’s full moon which is known in the old calendars as the Wolf Moon, because traditionally this was the time of year that wolves howled on the edge of villages. We don’t have wolves round here, although they have re-introduced them into Scotland, but the foxes have been coming closer up to the house and making a real racket! The other night, at about 4am, I think one had caught a rabbit and the noise was awful! It woke us all up. It only stopped when my son opened the window and shouted at it.
There’s still plenty of winter mud around, especially after all that rain, and Lenny is back from his walk with my son looking like he’s been to a spa and put on a whole-body mud pack. Hmmm, my son doesn’t look too clean either. I think I’m going to need to end where I usually do….off to bath the Len!
Take care, all of you!