For me this brings to mind the very first Christmas and a petty officer
by the name of Ray Corndew who sailed aboard my wartime ship HMS Activity.
For a distant forbear of Ray was one of the three wise men of
long ago. His story, handed down father to son, has survived for these
two thousand years.
I personally can vouch for the veracity of Ray, a man of the utmost
It all came about when Ray’s relative was riding his camel in company
with the two other wise men when they saw this bright star in the evening
sky. They knew instinctively that a special baby had been born.
With their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh they were soon on their way.
Two of the riders were far ahead of Ray’s relative’s slower camel
and on reaching the stable joined the parents who had been trying
without success to think of a suitable name for their baby.
After a while Ray’s relative arrived and charged into the stable and in
so doing bashed his head with some force against the low beam above
What happened next changed the course of history.
Staggering into the stable he held his head and shouted out in pain ‘Jesus
The parents looked up in amazement, ‘a miracle’ they cried out.
‘That’s what we’ll call him!’
And thankfully, as we all know, the name stuck.
So please remember my friends with backache that Jesus is now up there
thinking of you and working on a cure.
And if you listen carefully you’ll hear him together with his Dad and the
Ghost singing that great Ink Spots song ‘We Three’.
On that joyous note may I wish you all a very happy October
with warm early autumn sunshine.