7th July 2015

fr_simonDear Friends,

As I’m sure you know one of our Development Appeal aims is to provide financial support for our link parish of St Simon and Jude, Namacunde. Our link parish hopes to construct a church building on the land we purchased for them some years ago. The cost of this project is $75,000 US and we have promised a generous contribution towards their costs. We have furthermore promised to purchase for them 200 plastic chairs at a cost of $10 US per chair. There is money in our Namacunde account and we hope to be in a position to make a donation for the chairs very soon.

Why is this important and why do this?
As the creed says:
“We believe in one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.”
The Church is Catholic; not because we as a parish are a bit high church, a bit like Rome, but because the Church is universal and therefore as sisters and brothers in Christ we are united through baptism to each other as a world-wide family of love.

Moreover, I believe strongly that if we hope to achieve our appeal aims principally through the generosity of others then we must recognise our responsibility to be generous to our sisters and brothers in need. It is easy to become obsessed with ourselves, this helps us to look beyond ourselves to the needs of others.

This Sunday we will be celebrating our link with St Simon and Jude and I hope during the service to be speaking with Fr Elias. It will be an opportunity for him to tell us in his own words how important our link is and to share with us his vision for the future.

I hope to see you on Sunday.

Simon


Dear Friends,

Some of you may know that I was born in Africa; in Zambia to be precise. Well, actually to be more precise in Northern Rhodesia as it was then called before it gained independence. I was born in a town called Kitwe and my father was in the police and my mother was a nurse at Llewellyn General Hospital. There were many copper riots and one day one of my father’s colleagues was attacked and taken to hospital. My father went with his friend and first set eyes on my mother and the rest as they say is history. Family history decrees that my twin brother and I were conceived while my parents were on honeymoon at the wonderful Victoria Falls Hotel, but that, as they say, is probably too much information…..

Fr Simon has written about Alma and our link with St Simon and St Jude Namacunde. I was reminded about another wonderful African priest and bishop this week; the very wonderful Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu – who preached so wonderfully at my ordination last year. He celebrated his 60th wedding anniversary this week with a big ceremony in South Africa and there was a great report in the press. “He (Tutu) has often honoured his wife for the support she has given him. During the service he said to Leah: “I owe all that I am to you, and God was very good to give you to me – even if you do put up placards that say ‘you are entitled to your wrong opinion’. Their youngest daughter, Rev Mpho Tutu, officiated at the ceremony.

Their son, Trevor, told South African Broadcasting that the secret to their marriage was “very simple” according to his mother. “It is because she has never, ever contemplated divorce. She has thought about murder a couple of times but divorce, never.”

So there we have it, the secret of a long and happy marriage. Think about murder but never divorce!

With every blessing,

Fr Andrew