This year we went to St Dominic’s International Priory. The snow was still thick on the ground and the roads treacherous, so we made the trek on foot. We were rewarded with Madeleine Cordez playing lots of Bach on the organ, which was great, and a service in, variously, French, Flemish, German, Polish, English and Italian. Notwithstanding the conditions, the church was full. When I was a seven year-old boy I found a flint stone in the garden that somehow reminded me of a kneeling woman. My brother had just finished making an Airfix kit and had small amounts of brown, red and white paint left. So I painted the stone with his left-over paintĀ and put it in the crib. My mother kept the stone and, when she died, I found it among her effects. And so now thisĀ flint woman kneels in our crib every Christmas. A happy and peaceful Christmas to you all.