an English Easter

And we’re back.

Lauren and I had a great Easter weekend this year. On Friday, we, along with our good friends Courtney and Will, hopped into a rental car and made the 5 hour trek to Durham, England. It was a great drive around Edinburgh, along the East coast of England and through Newcastle, as seen from an entirely foreign side of the car / road for me, a first time UK driver. The weekend was spent walking around the town centre, stopping in at some nice places to eat, and checking out the local sights including the amazing river walk, Durham Castle and the University botanic gardens. Photos of all the highlights to come soon.

Of course, the highlight of the trip was Durham Cathedral, which was amazing. It is probably second only to Notre Dame in terms of the most impressive places of worship that I have ever seen. We toured around a bit on Saturday, and went back on Sunday morning for the Easter service. We arrived at around 9.45 am, just in time for the Matins service, or Morning Prayer. This was followed by the main service, led by the Bishop of Durham N.T. Wright. His Easter sermon was quite inspiring, revolving around the topic of beauty. It featured aspects of his theology that those familiar with him would recognize and appreciate – themes of new creation, the new temple, the glory of God made manifest in the world as a present reality. One bit that really stood out to me was when he read of Mary mistaking Jesus for a gardener – an “honest mistake” to make in light of the empty tomb and new creation. The service also featured the Eucharist, and we made our way up to the front to kneel and receive the bread and the [real] wine. Lauren and I were privileged to be served the bread by the Bishop himself, which made it a bit more special. Overall, we were in church for more than three hours, and it honestly went by so quickly. I think that was the first real Anglican service I have ever attended, and I think I could get very used to that way of doing church. Will actually ended up sitting beside the Bishop’s daughter, and she made a point of introducing us to her Dad. So, we exited the Cathedral having shook N.T.’s hand and feeling blessed after a great time of worship.

After lunch, we drove to Glasgow [where we dropped off the Stalder’s], and Lauren and I made our way up to Stirling. We spent the night in a wonderful B&B with a view of the Wallace Monument out our window. Yesterday was spent making our way up the great monument, walking about the city centre, and touring Stirling Castle. It’s a pretty cool city with loads of Scottish history in and around it – a great place to stop on the way back to Aberdeen.

And that’s where I am now, suffering from a terrible cold that we both picked up along the way, and needing to get back to the books. Like I said, picture of Durham and Stirling are on the way, so look out for that here and on facebook.

Hope everyone had a great Easter.

Predictions for the 1st round of NHL playoffs to come tomorrow.

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    • Catherine Iaboni
    • April 14th, 2009

    Sounds like a nice trip. My mom told me once that she had “fond memories” of Stirling Castle. She visited it as a child and when she came out of the castle she fell down some steps and broke her arm. I don’t think they were so “fond memories”.

    Love to you both Aunt Catherine & Uncle Bruno

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