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The Rockin' Rev November 2018

ROCKIN REV18th November 2018
as published by St Andrew's Church in the Gorleston Community Magazine

 

Remember, remember the 5th of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot

(lines from a traditional English rhyme)

Remember, remember says the old rhyme. The month of November is very much a time when our nation remembers. Remembrance Day, which falls on Sunday 11th November in 2018, is a day for the nation to remember and honour those who have sacrificed themselves to secure and protect our freedom. This year is especially poignant as it marks 100 years since the end of the First World War
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Some 65 million men were mobilised across Europe during World War I. Nearly a third of them — some 21 million — were wounded. Another 8.5 million were killed and some 7.7 million were taken prisoners of war. All of them had family and friends whose lives were changed forever by the events of 1914-1918

Poppies grew on the battlefields after the end of WWI. The red poppy has become the most identifiable and potent symbol associated with Remembrance Day. The Remembrance Poppy, rendered in paper and plastic, is worn with reflection and pride as a collective act of remembrance for generations of British war dead and the continuing desire to care for those affected by war

ROCKIN REV 11-2018CJust before Remembrance Sunday we have Bonfire night. Bonfire Night or Guy Fawkes Night is the name given to an annual celebration on the 5th November which is characterised by bonfires, fireworks, sparklers and toffee. At one time the event was mostly celebrated by individual families. Today people are more likely to attend a huge communal firework display

This annual tradition is a way of remembering the events of November 5th 1605 when a plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament in London, killing all inside including the King, was foiled. This plot became known as the Gunpowder Plot
A man named Guy Fawkes and his group of conspirators had put 36 barrels of gunpowder in cellars underneath the Houses of Parliament, ready to set off a massive explosion

What happened to Guy Fawkes? Well, he was arrested, tortured and executed for his part in the failed plot

The lighting of bonfires became the way of celebrating that the target of the Gunpowder Plot (King James 1) survived the attempt on his life. Fireworks were introduced to Bonfire Night in order to represent the explosives that were never set off by Guy Fawkes and his fellow plotters

Remembering is part of our DNA. This, I believe, is because we are made in the image of a God who also remembers. The two acts of remembrance during November compel us to reflect on our lives as individuals, as communities, and as a nation. They also oblige us to face the past, to think about the present, and to contemplate the future

 

Rev Brian Hall

Vicar of St Andrew's Church

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