A group of parishioners came out of morning Mass the other day and spotted an owl in the tree overlooking the church! I don’t think I’ve ever seen as owl except in a nocturnal environment in a zoo, but this one was out in the open in broad daylight. Some quick reading about owls and you find plenty about the various views in different cultural perspectives; from ancient ideas of their mystery and magic to ideas of their bringing good luck and protection from suffering! Look carefully at the picture and you can only just distinguish her/him from the tree trunk colours .. pretty clever camouflage!

The most common take on owls holds them as symbols of wisdom and with this one being right outside the church, that’s the message that spoke to me.

Tip-toeing through the garden to try to get a picture, this owl’s eyes followed me carefully. It was eery in a bit of a unique way, especially in that I hadn’t seen an owl in the open before. This simple and somewhat unusual moment in creation reminded me of the ancient psalm: ‘Lord, make us know the shortness of our lives, that we may gain wisdom of heart!’

With friendship in God’s mission,


Originally featured in in January 2019