Sunday, 30 July 2017


Many years ago, I worked for a Headmaster (in a large school) whose party piece was being able to say which member of his staff was the owner of a particular set of keys.  Even when unsubtle evidence like the car keys were removed, he was always correct.  The keyring would tell him a lot and then the type and nature of the keys would tell him the age of the house, the number of houses the owner had access to (own/boyfriends/parents). He would give a description of the lifestyle of the person from their keys and then say who he thought it was.

I don't suppose he was all that clever, and I can't decide whether he was caring or creepy to know us so well.

However, there is no denying the authority invested in keys and the rights they confer. Also, there is no denying how much the keys we have access to say about us.

This last month I've been denuding my keyring. First to go were my work keys: lab, filing cabinet, chapel and sacristy.  Then went the house keys.  Then went the car keys.

I'm left authorityless, save the key to the padlock on my toolbox (which I do hope I'm reunited with on Thursday). That is one of two keys that is left hanging from my University of Salford keyring. The other key, I will remove shortly, I have no idea what door it opens, in what part of the country, if indeed it is this country. It is staying because it looks "friendly".... it must have belonged to the door of someone I liked.

I'm in a sort of limbo.  There will be new keys for me on Wednesday, but in the meantime, I am "nobody".... just the rightful opener of a toolbox stuck in a warehouse somewhere in Bucharest. It is not exactly the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven...... I know my place.

As I said farewell to the Vetus Ordo today, it wasn't with a pang of sadness.  To be sure, I'll miss it.  Today I was just giving thanks for being able to get to know the older rite and for the growth I have had in experiencing it. However, the old Office and old calendar cannot be taken from me, they are my bedrock and I will continue to use them. God knows what He is doing. I am away from the easy access TLM for a reason and all will be revealed in the fullness of time..... right now is not the time to be wondering why.... besides, nothing is going to be revealed to a numpty with only 2 keys, one of which may be for a front door that no longer exists.

1 comment:

Ttony said...

Prayers, prayers and prayers.

And I hope there's some real fun too. Remember the Rag Week when one morning Manchester woke up to a set of footprints which went all the way from Queen Victoria's statue in Piccadilly to the underground Ladies' toilet and then back again. That's what we are, and what we can be - anywhere.

But mainly prayers.