Sunday, June 10, 2007

shoes

'Who's that?' asked Ryan pointing at a statue as he cycled along a path whilst his brother played soccer.

Who indeed! Well given we were in a Catholic school's grounds, and it was a long haired bearded chappie in flowing robes with a flaming heart leaping out of his chest and his hand up to stop the traffic in the neighbouring carpark I hazzarded a guess and said 'It's probably meant to be Jesus'.

'It can't be!' came the reply with a furrowed brow and that look that I know these days means more questions are coming... oh no, I panicked a bit, thinking I'm on dodgy ground here. He's an Anglican churchgoer and really ought to be far better aquainted with christian icons than I am - even if he is only four and a half. Please don't ask about the heart, please don't.... pretty much everything I know about Catholisism has been gained from Maeve Binchy books and those folk I know who've abandoned that faith with vengance, so somewhat patchy and decidedly biased to say the least.

'He's not got any shoes on, it can't be Jesus!' Huh? Now I know we called a certain style of untrendy footwear Jesus Sandals at school but c'mon, this is New Zealand - kids commonly go to school in bare feet or even if they do go to school in shoes they don't always come home with them on. Going bare foot here is normal.

'But you don't always wear shoes, you don't even like wearing shoes - why can't Jesus have bare feet?' was my puzzled reply - but phew looked like I was off the hook about that heart thing, Sacred Heart isn't it? There endeth my knowledge on that particular subject, well that and that it adorns the Baz Luhrman 'Romeo & Juliet' merchandise...

'Cos he can't, that's why. He's got to have shoes on' errr....
'Well maybe he's got sandals on and you just can't see them because of his robes - you can only see his toes really'
'But he's got to have shoes on....'
came the concerned reply. 'You come and play with me now?'

Which I duly did... and several hours later the penny dropped that the above mentioned shoes that he doesn't like wearing had to be worn for church on Sundays. See there was logic in there afterall- if Ryan had to wear shoes for church then Jesus bloomin' well had to wear his too. Fairs fair eh?

Sometimes being a Quaker sets you at a disadvantage in such situations, several of us in Wellington often turned up to Meeting in bare feet (including Ryan's uncle!), or kicked shoes off as soon as arriving which is probably why it took so long for the penny to drop. Dressing up for Meeting isn't really the 'done thing' - after all you are who you are and lets face it it's what you are inside as a person that matters far more than what you look like and then there're all those testimony issues about simplicity, equality, integrity...

I've a sneaking suspicion that Jesus, as depicted with his long hair and beard, flowing robes and bare feet (or maybe sandals you couldn't see...) would feel far more at home coming to join a bunch of Quakers for Meeting for Worship than in a church full of people all dressed up to the nines in their Sunday Best. But if he wants that Sacred Heart thing maybe he'd be better with a Romeo & Juliet t-shirt on, don't want to go frightening anyone now do we?

5 comments:

Lovin' Life Liz said...

They will be living in Hamilton!

Anonymous said...

FOOTBALL.

Anna Dunford said...

Hehehe... That wouldn't be you Simon would it? Have you any idea how much trouble I get into with Ryan when I call it football? It's almost more than my life's worth! Believe me undoing a lifetime of conditioning of calling it football to get it 'right' is proving hard work so I have to practice =)

I'll let you battle this one out with him when you get here!!! Good luck... you'll need it. But I get to watch ok?

Liz - do put your F/friends in touch, there are some great folk down there who would be only too happy to make them welcome and I'll do what I can from here!

Anna Dunford said...

ok, so it looks like it was Sebastian not Simon but even so...

If you want to get all Scottish about it it should be fitba' anyway =)

martinb said...

You want to be careful of statues...

Don't blink. Not once.