LIVING LIGHT
Living Light
Welcome! You have found the site of the CreationKeepers team (Christ Church's Eco Church Committee), which shares ideas and experiences about how we can all lighten our environmental footprint. We do this because we see our planet and its resources at a breaking point and believe in the power of personal examples. Most weeks, we will reflect on some aspect of living, working, shopping, consuming, reading, learning, etc. These are all local experiences and can easily be adopted by others in our community. Our authors (Rosie and Monika) look forward to any comments or ideas that you may also have and want to share. Send us your ideas at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Blog #78: A Poem of Space and Respect

July 14th, 2022
Philip Reading
*
Foxes, magpies, cats/
wood pigeons invade my space/
Do I respect theirs?
*
During the summer months - instead of putting together our regular blog - we invite our readers to contribute a Haiku reflecting on creation or efforts in creation-keeping.  Haikus are a short form of poetry, originally from Japan. Traditionally, they consist of three phrases - the first one with five syllabi, the second one with seven syllabi, and the third with five syllabi again. One haiku is enough, but you can also combine it with a picture, a story, or another haiku. Feeling inspired? Please send your haiku to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 

 

Blog #77: A Poem of Heat and Rain

July 7th, 2022
Maria Cristina Krier
*
Our flight is delayed/
We wait patiently to go/
And enjoy ourselves.
While it’s raining here/
In Scotland and in London/
Vienna dwells in heat.
That’s the proof that now/
The real summer has arrived/
And holidays start. 
Dear God, give us peace/
And freedom and heartfelt Love/
For all those in pain.
 May God’s Love surround/
And strengthen all of us now/
And for ever more.
Amen.
*
During the summer months - instead of putting together our regular blog - we invite our readers to contribute a Haiku reflecting on creation or efforts in creation-keeping.  Haikus are a short form of poetry, originally from Japan. Traditionally, they consist of three phrases - the first one with five syllabi, the second one with seven syllabi, and the third with five syllabi again. One haiku is enough, but you can also combine it with a picture, a story, or another haiku. Feeling inspired? Please send your haiku it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 

Blog #76: LivingLight in Summertime

June 30th, 2022
Brandy Bauer & Monika Weber-Fahr
Summertime is here!  Last week’s June 21st marked the summer solstice or midsummer.  Tomorrow, children in Vienna go on their two-month long summer breaks.  Also, many doctor’s offices and other services will close for some time in the coming month or so, and even Christ Church moves onto a summer schedule. In July and August clocks in Vienna will be ticking slower than for the rest of the year.
Summertime is also an opportunity - indeed an invitation - to notice life around ourselves with more attention. Many of us take time out of our busy schedules, and if we are lucky we are able to slow down and create more harmony between the speed at which we live and the pace of nature and its beings. A perfect time, it seems, for reflecting on what God’s creation means to us..
This is the spirit of Living Light in Summertime: Instead of the regular blog, we want to invite our readers to share short observations on what they see and feel about creation or creation keeping as they go through the summer months.  To make it easy, we thought of haikus as the main format.  Haikus are a short form of poetry, originally from Japan.  Traditionally, they consist of three phrases - in a 5 - 7 - 5 pattern, containing a seasonal reference. A good fit for the Living Light Blog. So, the invitation to you all is to compose a creation-minded thought or observation in three lines, the first one with five syllabi, the second one with seven syllabi, the third with five syllabi again. 
Will you join the team?  You can write just one three-liner, or put together several, telling a longer story.  Or you can send us a Haiku together with a text or picture.  To inspire us all, Brandy is giving us a head-start:

*
Scents emanating /
From the array of flowers / 
In the garden. Wow. 

Bounding flowers bounce /
As if happy to see me /
As I stop to look.

Attached you will find /
Exactly that flowerbed /
That inspired me.

 
Inspired?  Do send your haikus to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Or any other idea or thought, of course. 
Have a great summer! We look forward to hearing from you!

Blog #75: It's hot, hot, hot in Vienna

June 23rd, 2022
Monika Weber-Fahr
Thirty. Thirty-one. Thirty-two. Yes, these were the numbers on the thermostat in my kitchen in downtown Vienna this week, and if I read the forecast right we’ll get to 34o centigrade next week. It’s hot in Vienna - even though summer only just started. Is this the changing climate or has Vienna always been that warm in the summer? I don’t really know; what I do know is that we just saw a full-scale heat wave across Europe and North Africa, with temperatures well above 40 degrees in Spain, France and Germany; the drought in Italy with unusually low water levels in the river Po is only part of that story.  Earlier in June, similar heat waves - there with temperatures well into the 40s -  hit North America, and earlier in the year India and Pakistan. Harvests are at risk and forest fires on the rise.
What to do? Here in Vienna, a major concern is everybody’s health: Many people - in particular as we get older - cannot handle extreme temperatures well. Staying cool and staying hydrated is critical! The city helps - with some 1,300 public drinking water fountains, 170 water fog set-ups and over 70 mobile wells, amongst other things.  All of them are are easy to find - at least when using the Cooles Wien app, available for free in your app store. There you can find - at the tip of your finger - how far you (or your dog!) are from the next water fountain, or where you can find other opportunities for cooling down, including parks and swimming pools.  And if you want to find out whether your area is particularly hot, do check out the Vienna heat map, listing parts of town that are particularly exposed. This is based on the temperatures typically measured in these areas and based on the share of young people and senior citizens living there.
Vienna has a few other great locations that might allow you to stay cool - without spending extra energy. Several Viennese churches have - literally - cool underground locations, including St. Stephan’s catacombes, the Capuchin’s Crypt, or the crypt in St Peter’s Church. And yes, it can get chilly in these underground places, if though they may not be for the fainthearted.  If you like things to be adventurous, you may even go on the Third man tour - remember that novel of Grahame Greene, a film with Orson Wells? - that takes place primarily in the Viennese underground!  Other somewhat odd places in Vienna that offer enjoyable coolness include the Salzgrotte Oceaneum and the Polardome in the Schönbrunn Zoo. 
Mostly though, when walking across town, a quick visit in any of the churches will offer respite from the heat.  What better reason to come for a visit to a holy place?  The catholic church is pro-actively using the cool temperatures in its churches as a way to promote its Refreshing Church campaign.  Not everyone knows what you know, though, so keep on the lookout for people who may be suffering from dehydration and offer them water or point them to places where they can find it. Vienna has some 12,000 + people without a place of their own - they need us to care, especially in the middle of the heat!

Picture: Check out the COOLES WIEN app (simply type COOLES WIEN in your appstore on your mobile): It will show you the nearest locations of water fountains, cooling areas, and so on....
Inspired? Thoughts or reactions? Or ideas for forthcoming blogs? We look forward to hearing from you - best via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..