Oddly, I’m going to be doing this action on Easter Sunday. Why? Because as part of our Family Communion service in Offord, we’re going to plant some autumn-flowering crocuses in the old font that has been sitting, unloved, in the churchyard for as long as anyone can remember.
At the moment the old font is full of stones and scrubby dirt, but by Easter Day it will be refilled with fresh, dark, fertile soil, and we shall all plant a bulb in it – come Autumn, our Easter planting will remind us that although the days are drawing in, the light of Christ never goes out.
We’re planting the bulbs in the old font partly because it’s there – we wanted to brighten up that part of the churchyard (it’s beside the path from the carpark to the church, so lots of people walk past it). But it’s also because at Easter we renew our baptism promises, reaffirming our belief that life is stronger than death, that love is stronger than hatred, and that light is stronger than darkness.
We’ll be renewing our actual baptism promises inside, around the new font, but it feels right that we also visit and bring new life to the old font, too – and to enable it to be a witness to the light and life and love of God not just to those inside church, but to everyone who passes by.