More Notes from The Orchard – 43


June 2017


So here we are, standing on the threshold of goodness knows how our lives will be going forward into the next five years.  Some people may have already voted by post. and others of us who intend voting in this election will by now have more or less made up our minds about which candidate we will choose – or even whether to give the whole thing a miss this time.  


Many readers of these ‘Notes' will have been blessed by having lived through the many decades of peace after the horrors of the first World War although maybe the events of WWII touched their childhood. As the country grappled with the aftermath of war we all had to learn what peace was. Parents at and of the time remember it but peace itself had rarely been spoken of while the war was actually taking place and certainly not to children.


Politics were spoken of and the result of the 1945 election, (when I was nine years old,) shocked all the grown-ups. “How could they do that, after Churchill won the war!”


But the young adults of the time had had enough war and wanted change, which propelled the rise of Socialism and the establishment of the welfare state, originally proposed by the Liberal politician, William Beveridge.


Peace didn’t arrive smoothly and unruffled: the world of politics at the time was very exciting – even to a child. My father was a doctor and the launch of the National Health Service in 1948 was wonderful for so many people.


Fashion was a pleasant surprise with Dior’s amazing ‘New Look’ when long skirts were in, waists were trim and all sorts of materials for sewing appeared in the shops. Television, small black and white, made a second entrance in 1947 but didn’t prove popular until the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II came along when public demand soared. Costs came down, the pictures improved and TV hasn’t taken a single step backwards ever since, though that is a debatable point!


Patterns of living have fled by since those days. If our parents and grandparents suddenly landed in a flying saucer they would find themselves totally lost..


After nearly 80 years of relative peace, with glimpses of danger now and then reminding us that war can come again as groups of people withdraw from each other and turn into tribes, the idea of working together for the benefit of all slips through our minds into the bogs of jealousy, envy and violence which inevitably turn into war.


What we need to bear in our hearts are kindness and loving care for those around us so that we can indeed fulfil the hopes and teachings of Jesus Christ (Mt.28:19-20.)


But, and it is a very big but: we have to do all this within the bounds of politics, in our case the bounds of capitalism and it is very, very difficult to do both...


There could be an answer in the words of Jesus: ‘Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’


In other words, we concentrate on the advice given about worldly things then, with our encouragement and prayers, let the politicians get on with doing what they think is right. In the meantime we concentrate on our relationships with each other.


So, we think and pray carefully and then decide which is the right way to vote and oh, this year the election is on the 8th June. Give your favourite a tick – or even a kiss!



Sarah Bell

Notes from The Orchard June 2017