Wednesday 22 August 2018

The Pebble Martyrs

Much mention in the papers of the holidaymaker who removed pebbles from a beach and had to drive back to avoid a £1,000 fine.

Well, that's obviously an inconvenience for them. And I'm glad they didn't get fined. But we have to pause at this point, and remember those martyrs of the Beaker People who have been shamefully persecuted through the years for gathering the symbols of our faith.

There was Shapmir, who was gored by a bull while looking for four-leafed clovers. Never smiled again when he sat down. And Grewitt, the famous 19th Century Semi-Druid, who was frightened by a duck while gathering feverfew. Not to mention Grolbor. He was collecting teasels for an inspirational meditation on the cruelty, and yet beauty, of nature when he got one in his beard.

But the most relevant to the news item  is the sad case of Archdruid Aelfwine, In need of inspiration for a "Pre-Modern Evensong" she took her followers down to Bude Beach one afternoon and collected 16 bushels of the finest pebbles.

The Lord of the Manor in those days, Sir Trelawney Poldark, apprehended the worshippers as the dragged the stones up the beach, had them arrested by the Yokel Militia, and imprisoned them in a small cell near Morwenstow. In cramped, damp conditions, drinking water that dripped from the walls and eating only the stale bread that the local ducks had refused, the Beaker People realised conditions were actually better than living in Aelfwine's Moot House. It was years till they agreed to come out.

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From Amazon, Sarum Bookshop, The Bible Readers Fellowship and other good Christian bookshops. An excellent book for your churchgoing friends, relatives or vicar. By the creator of the Beaker Folk.

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