Sunday, March 25, 2007

Breaking the chains


Winter has not yet finished with us. After a week of glorious gentle spring weather full of high skies and cheerful little breezes, a rowdy wind has been tormenting the tentatively emerging poor unfurling leaves. The March gales taunt and jeer at the signs of spring, laughing in the face of the soft and furry buds and shaking the poor daffodils and narcissi crossly. The wind-chimes in the garden rock frenziedly as the wind wrenches off handfuls of bare twigs and scatters them callously across the paths.

When we planned the Greenwich pilgrimage, we had foolishly hoped the weather would be warmer by now. Still, it wasn’t actually raining, even if the Siberian wind breathed icily in our faces. At least the Park was quiet. Only a handful of the usual collection of dogs, adults and small children pattered along its ordered paths.

Two-hundred years ago trans-Atlantic slavery was abolished by the UK parliament. This was not the end of the exploitation of poor people, (many women and girls are still trafficked into sexual slavery every day), it is however a potent reminder that trading human lives for whatever reason is wrong and that to make a stand can make a difference as was the case with the Trans-Atlantic Slave-Trade.

Our pilgrimage to some of Greenwich’s ancient and sacred sites would be made in memory of all those who have been enslaved. Our workings would be dedicated to breaking the chains that bound them, whether they lived now or in the past.

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