The Candlemas service at the St John’s College communion was very different from our usual format. We started in darkness in the dinning room, heard the scriptures and the sermon, based on Simeon and his faith and prayer, and then processed into the Leech hall where we gathered around the font. There we remind one another of our calling to the Church and anointed one another with water as a reminder of our baptism. We then gathered around the Communion table for the Eucharist, lit our individual candles and finally processed out into the garden to conclude our service with a reminder that we are sent to bear the light of Christ to the world. At various points in the service we sang 3 different chants. One had the words: “Kindle a flame to lighten the dark..”, another had the words: “Heart humbled, offered, the servant of God” .
The Image is based on these two themes. I used my own as a model (it was handy, being close at hand) and I noticed how the creases in the palm of my hand formed a cross (probably everyone has something similar) and so the hand in the image bears the mark of the cross. I thought it an interesting idea to think about; is it any hand? Or the hand of Christ? In the offering does my hand become the hand of Christ? It may not bear the mark of the nails but the cross is there. What does it mean for my hand to become the hand of Christ? Suddenly the offering takes on another dimension.