Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Christmas Greetings to the Eastern Orthodox

Today being Christmas Day for my Russian Orthodox friends in Oxford and elsewhere, and also observed by my relatives of Serbian Orthodox descent, I extend to them seasonal good wishes.

A Russian Orthodox friend from the church here in Oxford - a redundant church which they have renovated and furnished in recent years - was telling me yesterday of the slightly comic consequences of having to adjust the calendar when everyone else was celebrating in the western tradition. Thus the family's Advent calendar had to be renumbered to start in mid-December, and December 25th observed as an anticipation of today.

My relatives with Serb ancestry got the best of both worlds as children - Christmas as Catholics with their mother and her family on December 25th, then keeping an Orthodox Christmas with their emigre father almost a fortnight later.


Image from Cantate-Domino blogspot

No comments: