Choose Life!

During Lent, on weekdays, we’re inviting people connected with St Chrysostom’s to share their thoughts on a Bible reading set for Mass for the day. On Fridays we will share thoughts on one of the Stations of the Cross. A wide variety of people will be offering thoughts, some come to church, others are connected in other ways with us. We are very grateful to them for sharing their thoughts with us.

Often those commenting will have in a mind a small part of one of the readings.

The Thursday after Ash Wednesday

Today, Hannah, a doctor and member of our congregation comments on the first reading at Mass. All the readings can be read here.

Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live, by loving the LORD, your God, heeding his voice, and holding fast to him. (Deuteronomy 30.19)

Hannah’s thoughts;

Essentially, I was struck by the description of life and death as blessing and curse, something which our society seems to hang on to. That made me think about what I come across as a doctor.

When I work with patients coming towards then end of their lives, it’s not usually as simple as that – sometimes it is quite the reverse.

I question the words a little. What does it mean to ‘choose life’? The concern I have is that it has echoes of something I’ve heard more of lately about the language we use when we talk about disease. This is the notion that someone is “fighting” cancer or “battling ” MS or Motor Neurone Disease. It is almost as if loosing that battle is some kind of failure.

We don’t choose to live, or indeed choose to die, but we can choose how we live, and how we think about dying. We can consider the quality of life as well as the quantity of life.

What does it mean for you to ‘Choose life’? 

God of all hope, hear our prayer. Free us to choose life, free us to grow in love.


About stchrysostoms

St Chrysostom’s is an Anglican (Church of England) parish church in Manchester, UK. We’re an inclusive, diverse and welcoming faith community rejoicing in our Anglo Catholic tradition, where people of many differing backgrounds make friends. Find our Facebook group at
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1 Response to Choose Life!

  1. lortonboy says:

    From an old Mancunian exiled in York, and a follower on-line of all that is going on at St Chrysostom’s Church, thank you very much for this Lenten discipline, so very helpful to my personal devotions.

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