‘As we prepare our hearts and minds to welcome Christ in this season of Advent, we are called, in turn, to “Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you.” The deep truth of Welcome is seeing the other, and Jesus modeled this way of seeing for us. He paid attention to what was going on around him, especially those people he encountered daily. Jesus saw the other with a heart of love, compassion, and forgiveness, and he invites us to do the same. Deep holy hospitality requires intentionality, and we bear witness to God’s grace when we seek to welcome the stranger, the “other” among us, with the eyes and heart of Jesus.’ (Mary Foster Parmer)
Adulis Eritrean Restaurant, Brixton Road, London is a great place to visit. ‘Injera with Tsebhi (Stew) is one of the main traditional foods in Eritrean cuisine. Injera, also called Taita, is leavened pancake made with sourdough of Taff flour, hence the tangy flavour. Tsebhi is mainly prepared with beef, chicken, mutton or vegetables. As well as Tsebhi, Eritrean cuisine comprises of a variety of vegetarian dishes. Eating involves tearing off pieces of injera and wrapping it around portions of tsebhi to form a helping – each helping is handled with the hand without the use of any cutlery.’
With so many asylum seekers and refugees from Eritrea arriving in the UK, we pray that they may find here a warm welcome, loving communities and kind-hearted people.
In Taipei 101 is a large black granite circle in the floor, and in white marble are carved the names of a whole host of places, some well-known, others nobody has ever heard of. This of course is ART.
Public Art in fact, known as the ‘Global Circle’ and described on the Taipei 101 website rather eloquently as:
In the most luxurious and hottest shopping center, this Global Circle exists in silence. The black granite ring is embedded in the Social Plaza of the shopping square, and white inscriptions of names of cities from celebrated metropolises to unknown towns mingle in disorder along its border—in the tide of globalization, we are in the center of the world as well as the margin of others. Under sunlight, the Global Circle creates another dimension of space, echoing constellations in the cosmos.
So there I was on New Year’s Eve with many hours to spare before midnight, and there I was staring at all these randomly arranged places – and there, in the middle of them all is no lesser a name than the mighty TABORA! Yes Tabora! Is it one of ‘unknown towns’ mentioned above, or in fact a ‘celebrated metropolis’? After all, there it is placed between Hiroshima and Miami….
Ah Tabora, what memories! Famous because – well, David Livingstone hung out in the area long ago, but more famous cos it’s a major junction on the railway line between north and south Tanzania, the station where the trains going upcountry divide to go west or north, and where they meet up on their journey south – either way, travelers spend many long (sometimes never-ending!) happy hours waiting there on the train…..
So now Tabora can know it’s on the map – not just any old map – but on the Global Circle right in the heart of Taipei 101!