The Parish Church of St John-at-Hampstead

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January 2018

Some modern tips for the Wise Menís journey

David Pickup for Parish Pump

Suppose you are going abroad, to pay your respects to a newly born royal baby. But the country you visit is under foreign occupation, and you don’t know where the baby is. What can you do to make sure you are successful? 

When travelling abroad in foreign places, first think carefully about your transport – how many camels will you really need? How will you feed them on the way? And what about relying solely on the stars at night for navigation? Would a Satnav during the day help things along a bit? 

When you arrive in the country, be sensitive to the political situation. It may be unwise to go straight to the authorities and ask them where their future king has just been born. This can make leaders uneasy, and can even get innocent people killed. Also, be aware of the country’s attitude to different gods, especially if you have gone along intending to worship one in particular.

Don’t worry if you are given only part of an address, say, only the name of the town where the baby may be. Go there, and trust that somehow you will feel ‘led’ to the right house. 

Sadly, crime is common in many foreign cities, so if you are carrying expensive presents like gold or frankincense, it is best to keep them out of sight. A coat with large pockets, or even a loose cape, will work fine. 

If any problems arise after you find the baby and pay your respects, don’t hang about. Pay attention to that nightmare you had last night, and get out of the country before you are arrested. Be happy to take a different route home. After all, it is all under the same stars. Above all, be wise, and have a Happy New Year!

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