Alone and together

I wasn't able to join the global day of action for climate justice on Saturday, though I'd have loved to. Two seemingly minor injuries to my back when I was fifteen and then twenty-three have increasingly left their painful mark. I can happily go for a long walk, as long as I can maintain my own rhythm and stride: however, as I have discovered, the endless standing before any marching even starts would be excruciating enough, without the slow, stop-start pace typical of any sort of march or procession. 

So, I stayed at home, taking part by tweeting photos sent by my colleagues, very conscious that they were part of something not limited to a few cities in the UK. I scrolled through photos of people I knew, including several religious in other orders, with some envy. Yes, the marchers in Glasgow were clearly getting soaked - prompting memories of an unforgettably rainswept march in the early 1990s - but I could feel the camaraderie, and the sense of purpose; the sense, too, of marching with the world, and of being part of something so much huger than oneself or even one's delegation. 

And then, later on, I saw some photos on Facebook posted by our sisters who were part of the rally in Newcastle. And as I looked at them, I recalled some words from our Constitutions: Conscious that what we do, we do together... 

And with gratitude I was conscious that when we march - whether alone, many or only a few of us, whether at a rally or reluctantly at home - we march together. We can be alone, but never so alone that we aren't also together. Where my sisters are, I am too. And that is all part of the indescribably varied, often surprising hundredfold, which is all contained in Jesus' promise to each one.