A very Happy New Year to you all.
First a huge thank you to everybody who volunteered to help in church during the Christmas services, as always there are so many additional commitments at this time of year so your support is very much appreciated. I think it is fair to say that we had a very good Christmas, it is good that so many new or infrequent faces were seen in church. It was also good to be able to hear our organ again for the first time in nearly two years. There is still work to do, I hope we will be able to hear the the completed instrument in early February.
A New Year brings with it lots of new opportunities and at its first meeting of 2018 the PCC will be looking at how we plan for our future, what our new priorities will be and how we will be able to achieve them. Finance will be a key area for consideration, as will our outreach and the use of our buildings to further our work building up the Body of Christ.
Please keep the parish firmly in your prayers as we seek God’s guidance for our future direction.
May I wish you all a happy and blessed 2018!
Next weekend we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany. It does strike me as somewhat illogical that in the Anglican tradition we celebrate this Feast, remembering the arrival of the three magi, after the Massacre of the Holy Innocents: Herod is murdering infants before the arrival of the magi! I am told by Father David Matthews, Vicar of the nearby parish of Holy Innocents (where Fr Andy Rooney serves as Curate) that the Church in Canada celebrates this Feast on January 11th, which seems to me to make a little more sense. Nevertheless, Epiphany is a wonderful Feast, which I shall be celebrating this year with our brothers and sisters of St Luke’s, Chelsea whilst their Rector takes a well-earned break.
I have been reading on social media assorted resolutions made for 2018: giving up booze for January, becoming a vegan, visiting the gym, taking up running… the list goes on. For my part, I am attracted by this poem written by an Afro-American theologian, educator and civil-rights leader Howard Thurman. It expresses for me the hope that all Christians will carry the Song of the Angels with them into 2018, a year that none of us knows what holds in store.
When the Song of the Angels Is Stilled
When the song of the angels is stilled,
When the star in the sky is gone,
When the kings and the princes are home,
When the shepherds are back with their flocks,
The work of Christmas begins:
To find the lost,
To heal the broken,
To feed the hungry,
To release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations,
To bring peace among people,
To make music in the heart.
With every blessing