January 2.  “Tweede Nuwejaarsday” for over 100 years this was a cultural minstrel celebration in Cape Town, within the Malay and coloured communities.   Covid put a stop to it for a time but now it is back.  The whole community prepares the costumes and practices the music, but it seems that the minstrels have been male, but of all ages. They will feature in the flamboyant street parade with singing, dancing, banjos and other instruments. The Kaapse Klopse Carnival (new name)  remembers the slave culture during the 17-19th centuries. Slaves were given this day off to celebrate the New Year.  Formal slavery has been abolished worldwide, but human trafficking is just one modern form of slavery and does happen, even by destitute families. Workers at times too experience “slave labour” conditions.  In this new year can we begin to be more aware to balance celebration with justice in our society?   

Scripture.  All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. Shout to the Lord all the earth, ring out your joy. Ps 98.3.  Pope Francis:  Cultural Ecology. Together with the patrimony of nature, there is also a historic, artistic and cultural patrimony which is under threat. This is part of the shared identity of each place and a foundation upon which to build a habitable city. Ecology involves protecting the cultural treasures of humanity in the broadest sense.  LS143.