A reflection for the New Year by Cardinal Vincent Nichols
We all have a craving for a moment of glory, something that will lift us out of ourselves and create in us a sense of wonder and joy. That is part of our nature.
We can see that in the faces of so many who welcomed the New Year at one of the firework displays. Wonder in their faces, and exaltation at the colours, patterns and vitality projected into the night sky. It all makes us feel just great, for a while.
As a Liverpool fan, I have enjoyed moments of glory in 2019! And we hope for more this summer! Nothing is certain yet, nothing taken for granted!
These moments of glory, together with joy and hope they bring, point to deeper roots in our nature. Yes, we are made for glory, but a lasting and total glory that only God can give. We speak of it as the 'kingdom of God', the ‘reign of God'. It is this for which we long.
At our best, we try to establish here among us signs of that kingdom, some of its qualities and characteristics. We look for justice and compassion, for generosity and truth, for faithfulness and love, for a sense of unity and shared well-being. These qualities may well lie at the heart of our New Year resolutions.
So as this New Year begins, let us refresh that vision of how we really want life to be. This can be our prayer and our effort:
• that the new Government will strive both to create opportunities and respond to those most in need in effective and lasting ways;
• that businesses and financial institutions will act in awareness of their wider purpose, which is far more than profit and includes the strengthening of bonds with, and within, the societies in which they operate;
• that the voluntary sector will be renewed in the highest of values of service and, wherever possible, respected for its integrity rather than burdened any further with increasing regulatory requirements;
• that each of us, every person in our society, will shun all form and expressions of hatred against others. The recent anti-Semitic graffiti in North London bring shame to us all. Such hatred can have no place in our way of life. Only when we see the good in each other will every person feel welcomed and unafraid;
• that we will all grow in our awareness of our responsibilities towards each other and towards the created world which we share.
This list could be much longer. But this is the pathway towards that kingdom for which we have been made and for which we long.
A happy New Year to all.