Photo was taken by Jeyaratnam Caniceus from Pixabay

Birthday’s Today

Cillian Murphy (Actor) is 47

Henry Mountcharles (Concert Promoter) is 72

Alastair Campbell (Journalist and spin doctor) is 66

Quote For Today

‘It’s really beautiful. It feels like God visits everywhere else but lives in Africa.’ ~Will Smith

Significance of Today

Today is African Unity Day, also known as Africa Day and is celebrated annually on May 25th. It is a day and an opportunity to acknowledge the achievements of the peoples of Africa.

Africa is the second largest continent on Earth. It is bounded by the Mediterranean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean, the Red Sea, and the Indian Ocean and is divided almost equally by the Equator.

Africa is composed largely of a rigid platform of ancient rocks that underlies vast plateau regions in the interior. Its average elevation is about 2,200 ft (670 m), but elevations range from 19,340 ft (5,895 m) at Mount Kilimanjaro to 515 ft (157 m) below sea level at Lake Assal.

The Sahara, the world’s largest desert, occupies more than one-fourth of the total land area. Less than one-tenth of Africa’s land area is arable, while nearly one-fourth is forested or wooded.

The peoples of Africa probably speak more languages than those of any other continent. Africa as a whole is a developing region. Agriculture is the key sector of the economy in most countries. Diamond and gold mining are especially important in the south, while petroleum and natural gas are produced particularly in the west.

Africa is widely recognized as the birthplace of humankind. Archaeological evidence indicates that the continent has been inhabited by humans and their hominid forebears for some 4,000,000 years or more. Modern humans are believed to have appeared about 100,000 years ago in the eastern region of sub-Saharan Africa. Somewhat later those early humans spread into northern Africa and the Middle East and, ultimately, to the rest of the world.



Thought For Thursday May 25th

Many of us look at ourselves and see only the thorns, the defects. We despair, thinking that nothing good can possibly come from us. We neglect to water the good within us and eventually it dies. We never realise our potential. ~ Author Unknown

There is a story told about a certain man who planted a rose and watered it faithfully and before it blossomed he examined it. He saw that the bud would soon blossom but also saw the thorns. He thought: How can any beautiful flower come from a plant burdened with so many sharp thorns? Saddened by this thought, he neglected to water the rose and before it was ready to bloom, it died.

Sadly this story can happen with us too. I’m not sure is it inbuilt in our human nature, but we tend to see the thorns so easy, particularly in ourselves. In our Gospel stories it is easy to see how Jesus recognised the thorns in everyone’s story. But carefully and lovingly he always saw beyond the thorns to the flower. Most importantly he encouraged each person to see beyond the outer thorns to the great beauty within each person. There is a great hunger and need for more of this today. We need to nurture and celebrate everything good that’s within each of us. This needs to be done, not occasionally but every single today.

There was a beautiful line in Sundays Gospel: It goes, Peace I give to you, my own peace I give you, a peace the world cannot give, this is my gift to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. This can also be our prayer moment too. We are all looking for an inner peace and calm. We live in a world that is troubled and fragile with many visible thorns. Jesus did not live in a bubble or was untouched by the challenges of life. He understands better than anyone else what we are going through. It is a beautiful invitation from Jesus to be open to his gifts to us. These are the gifts of peace, calm, light, hope and so much more. The invitation is to be open to these gifts. They are absolutely free and without any conditions attached. They are ours today and everyday.