Mulling Graves at Mulgrave

Inside St Oswald’s Church at Mulgrave on the Yorkshire coast is an interesting collection of old funerary monuments, such as ancient churches are wont to accumulate. One of them, nicknamed the gingerbread man, is likely a thousand years old, and appears to be being pulled part by two wild beasts. Another chap has his head carved in the middle of a cross, bottom, for reasons not clear. A third one shows a pair wrestling, their torsos missing. Who these people were and how they lived is a mystery. Did one die a painful death at the teeth of wolves? Was another fighting a rival, and came off the worse? Mysterious markers, from a mysterious age commemorating the lives of people whose names and deeds are long forgotten.

Yet they are alive and well, awaiting judgement in hades, or their new bodies in heaven. The tenth century was not a great time for gospel truth, but the Lord has always had a people on the earth. These folk are as conscious and thoughtful now as they were back then, for their names, deeds and faith are as well known to God as they are as unknown to us. People get forgotten, but not by God; sins get overlooked, but not by God. Only acceptance of the gospel will determine whether these long-dead folk will shame or shine:

And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake,

Some to everlasting life,

Some to shame and everlasting contempt.

Daniel 12:2