There's something about people who can get up early in the morning. Whenever I have referred to my difficulty with mornings, at best I get pity, at worst scorn. Why is it morally superior to be able to get up in a morning, compared to being able to be active well past midnight? [not that I usually am, because I have to try and get up!] And it doesn't work to try and adjust your 'time zone'. When training for the ministry, I did a placement with a vicar who did morning prayer every day at 7am, so people commuting to work could join him. I got to bed between 10 & 1030 most nights, but still felt exhausted, whereas a midnight bedtime/8am get up would have been fine.
It was hugely reassuring to see a programme about all this a few months ago. Apparently we all have an internal clock that runs at about 24 hrs a day. However, some people run a little quicker than 24 hrs per biological 'day', and others slower. Hence some people are better at night, and others in the morning. Vindication at last.
So it has been good to start slowly today. Normal Sundays are challenging, having to be ready, dressed, prepared and compos mentis for an 8am service, but a 6-30am threw the system completely. This morning I woke up slowly, listening to the Today programme and then a fascinating edition of Start the Week. The guest list was brilliant: Philip Pullman, Abp. Rowan Williams, Professor Mona Siddiqui and David Baddiel. Apart from the comments on the Catholic Church (much quoted out of context) it was an intriguing conversation about belief, truth, values, institutions and communities. A surprisingly good-spirited encounter between Rowan Williams and Philip Pullman, who appear to have a genuine mutual respect.