I am glad to wear this symbol which has meant so much to so many generations, the symbol that is on our country’s flag, the symbol that marks many a gravestone – and not least those of men who died serving our country in war – the symbol that stands on top of the crown worn by our Queen, the symbol on the Bible that is held in our courtrooms when people promise to tell the truth, the symbol that indicates the presence of a church where people can pray, the symbol that makes some sort of sense of the great realities of death and suffering and hope and forgiveness and resurrection.
Yesterday I enjoyed a meal with friends in an Indian restaurant. We enjoyed the sight of the table being laden with good things. The waiter beamed at our evident enjoyment as he brought chicken korma and pilau rice and curries and naan bread. One of our number was a clergyman, who blessed the food with the Sign of the Cross and led a short prayer. No one minded – indeed the restaurant seemed to like it, and there was much pleasant talk and a good atmosphere: it was a happy evening.
In modern Britain, let’s try to keep that goodwill, and value our common sense.
Joanna Bogle writes from London.
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