7th November

Petroc’s View

No god is like your God, riding in splendour across the sky, riding through the clouds to come to your aid. Deuteronomy 33: 26

Petroc sailed from Ireland, where he had trained in a monastery, to Cornwall where he founded his own monastery at Padstow (Petroc’s Stowe). A Celtic wheel cross may still be seen outside the door of the church. and in the churchyard are faint markings said to be of the cross that once stood at Petroc’s monastic gateway.

In his old age Petroc set out with twelve companions to live as a hermit on Bodmin Moor, settling himself in a beehive hut by the river. Dom Julian Stonor locates this as the stone beehive hut by the stream that runs out of Rough Tor marsh, and claims ‘it is one of the oldest Christian holy places in England’. So perhaps it was here that Petroc enjoyed that close affinity with nature that shows in many of the stories about him, such as his rescuing a stag from a hunter, and perhaps it was here that he looked out and meditated on the changing sounds and sights.

Though I am silent there is singing around me
Though I am dark there is vision around me
Though I am heavy there is flight around me
Wendell Berry

God has put variety in the creation. Sometimes the sky is filled with pink streaks instead of a golden glow. That is as well. The marvellous could otherwise become mundane. This variety is reflected in the flowers, and in the range of human temperament. It is reflected in the very nature of God.

Thank you
Creator of the world
for the music and medicine of flowers
which give us a scent of heaven upon earth
and for their vases which enable them to give their best.
May those who look at them see your glory