Our Annual Meetings have taken place and I am delighted (and relieved!) that we have Church Wardens, Secretaries and Treasurers in all three. They are vital to the running of the church and without them we could not function. Thank you to them and to the PCC members who do so much for the churches.
At each meeting we heard a report on the various activities which have taken place over the last year, and despite the restrictions imposed by Covid we have achieved quite a lot. It takes a meeting to make us realise that each church has gained members, has carried out work on its building and is looking to the future.
In September I shall have completed three years here, though a lot of that time has been in lock down or under restrictions, so it has been a strange Incumbency. It’s now time for someone with more energy to carry on the task, and with that in mind I shall be leaving at the end of July. This has been precipitated by a period of ill health; I am in constant pain and my mobility is compromised, so I have to reduce what I do until then. I am grateful to the three PCCs for their forbearance and kindness and hope you will understand if things are not quite as you would wish. Please check on page 16 for services times as they are somewhat reduced, and some will be led by lay people where this is permitted.
The process of appointing a new Incumbent is not as long nowadays as it once was. Our Rural Dean will shortly meet with the Wardens to discuss their needs and to draw up a Parish Profile. The post will appear on the diocesan website and more widely if the PCCs agree.
If you have booked a wedding or Baptism, don’t worry. It will go ahead as planned though I may not officiate.
It is all too easy to focus on our own situation and problems but Ukraine, Afghanistan, Yemen and many other places are suffering dreadfully and unimaginably. The courage of ordinary people is immense as they face up to their oppressors. In situations like this it is hard to find the right words, so here is a prayer of Pope John Paul ll which you might like to use.
Hear my voice, for it is the voice of the victims of all wars and violence among individuals and nations.
Hear my voice, for it is the voice of all children who suffer and will suffer when people put their faith in weapons and war.
Hear my voice when I beg You to install into the hearts of all human beings the wisdom of peace, the strength of justice, and the joy of fellowship.
Hear my voice, for I speak for the multitudes in every country and in every period of history who do not want war and are ready to walk the road of peace.
Hear my voice and grant insight and strength so that we may always respond to hatred with love, to injustice with total dedication to justice, to need with the sharing of self, to war with peace.
O God, hear my voice and grant unto the world Your everlasting peace. Amen.