Milverton, Somerset

Hedgerow Chaplin in January

As in the last few ‘Country Matters’ of 2021, the emphasis was on what is happening in the great outdoors during our Autumn and Winter seasons.
We have seen many things settle down to a period of quiet and calm. The trees, flora and fauna. All quietly recharging themselves ready for Spring!
If nature does it, and as we are part of nature, why don’t we take a little seasonal time out!
Just remember, life is a Pilgrimage which started the day you were born! Every journey you take, every time you take a step it is a Pilgrimage. So why not make the most of those steps to really enjoy, to look and see and listen to all of the delights around us through each season. 
On our walks we take time to pray and praise God for what he has given us. We sometimes walk in silence to take our own time out to be thankful for everything, to realise how lucky we are, to personally observe and really see what we have. This applies especially at this time, being the start of a new year.
Why not visit your favourite view and reflect on why it is so special to you and give thanks, maybe by reading your favourite psalm of praise. After all, this place could well be your very own ‘thin place’ on the planet! (If you are not sure what a ‘thin place’ is, give me a call and I will explain!)
Through January, there are many amazing festivities that will be happening. The 6 January brings us Epiphany, when the three Kings Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar made their way, following the star, to bring the baby Jesus his gifts.
Plough Monday on the 10 January marking the resumption of agricultural work after 6 January. This would often happen with the ploughmen walking the villages on a money making trip tied in with singing, acting out Mummers plays. Wassailing around the 17 January, blessing the apple trees to bear a good harvest and to drive off the evil spirits.
On a more modern note, we have Burns night on the 25 January where the amazing haggis takes pride of place. ‘The great chieftain o’ the pudding race’!
Your Full moon for January will rise on the 17 January at 11.51pm and is called the Wolf Moon.
Do send me your email address if you would like to be kept updated on Pilgrimage walk dates and times and other events that will be taking place this year. If you prefer, give me a phone call and I will then contact you to keep you up to date.
Whatever celebrations you follow, enjoy them, but stay safe and look after those around you, including your friends and not forgetting your neighbours!
Wishing you all a very happy and joyful New Year!
Steven Wort
Mobile 07557 958013