I have just witnessed a funeral as it should be: very different, I am sorry to say, from most funerals I conducted when I was still in post.
A family member in his early 60s was diagnosed with terminal cancer and died a month later. He was Congolese. His coffin, pictured here, was made of banana leaves.
Prime Minister Theresa May’s statement reverberated around the UK:
If you’re a citizen of the world, you’re a citizen of nowhere.
My guess is that this vicar’s daughter is totally unaware of the role Christianity played in getting people to think of themselves as citizens of the world.
Linda Woodhead’s recent article The government’s changes to faith schools sides with hardline religion draws attention to the fact that public attitudes to religion favour dogmatic extremists at the expense of more liberal and accommodating faith traditions.
Latin has a way of sticking to you, if you learned it at school. Far from being a dead language, at least in the minds of those who have particularly unhappy associations with the context in which they were taught, it is very much alive.
For one thing, it has shaped a good deal of the English which we still speak, as well as the more classical Latinate languages like Spanish and Italian. Bits of it can also remain lodged in our consciousness in their original form.