I'm thinking about my Christmas Eve homily and was reminded of these pictures from my brief time in Uganda. They were taken at the entrance to the Kolping Guest House where I first stayed when I arrived in March 2008.Looking at them now, I'm shocked at how shabby the house next door looks. The guest house itself was so well-kept, quiet and restful.
The thing about these photos and this experience, though, was that Before Uganda (B.U.), I thought of the Christmas story as a rural story; now I can see it as an urban one where animals live very close by. I have a slightly better sense of how crowded it was, how dirty, how little privacy there was.
Of course, it's not an inn at all in the Bible, not how we tend to think of it. The NIV has changed "inn" to "guest room," which is more accurate, but changes the picture. Will I preach about any of this? I don't know.
I'm going to go back to pondering now.