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  • Chris Williams

Friday 26th June – Icon of the Day

I have seen it standing up grey,

Gaunt, as though no sunlight

Could ever thaw out the music

Of its great bell; terrible

In its own way, for religion

Is like that. There are times

When a black frost is upon

One’s whole being, and the heart

In its bone belfry hangs and is dumb.

But who is to know? Always,

Even in winter in the cold

Of a stone church, on his knees

Someone is praying, whose prayers fall

Steadily through the hard spell

Of weather that is between God

And himself. Perhaps they are warm rain

That brings the sun and afterwards flowers

On the raw graves and throbbing of bells.

'The Belfry' by R. S. Thomas


Image: An elderly Tibetan women holding a prayer wheel on the pilgrimage circuit of the Barkhor, a quadrangle of streets that surrounds the Jokhang Temple, Lhasa. It is both the spiritual heart of the holy city and the main commercial district for Tibetans.

Photo: Luca Galuzzi, August 2006 - - licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic licence.


In St Mary’s prayer cycle for June 2020, today we pray for all those living in cramped conditions and without access to a green space.


Please donate if you can!

In these unprecedented times, St Mary’s is reaching out and supporting our community in many ways, especially online. But with Services in church cancelled, we no longer receive income from collections, nor from hiring out the church and hall buildings.

If you can help us financially to continue to offer Christ's love to our community in these difficult times, as those before us have done down the centuries, please consider making a donation by debit/credit card and to Gift Aid it if possible, by clicking this link to 'givealittle':

Thank you!


If you would like to contribute to these reflections, please do email Katherine Cox at


To keep up to date with how we continue the life of St Mary’s in these difficult times – including our ‘Icons of the Day’, Fr Jeff’s and Fr Piotr’s pastoral letters and reflections, weekly Zoom services and more – do please ‘like’ our Facebook page @StMarysTwickenham and bookmark our website



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