with Paul David Deakin
MISSIONS SUNDAY in the parish today. Comings and Goings. Fifteen Mission Agencies visiting and speaking about / displaying their various excellent works. Paul Critchlow delivered a marvellous homily at 8am on behalf of Church Army. Isobel Garlick represented International Water Aid at 9am. I preached about the need for a worldwide uniting vision at 10.45am.
Rachael Elizabeth – asked us last Sunday to trust God and to “Be Opened”. Today we said farewell to her, for the time being, as Rachael will begin her studies in Theology in Lampeter at the end of next week. We bless her on her way, thanking God for Rachael's own trust and openness, and glad that she was able to be with us to hear the news we've just announced about her friend …
Paul David Deakin – If all goes according to plan the Bishop of Chester will ordain Paul David Deakin to the Office of Deacon in July 2013, to “Serve his Title” (as assistant curate) in our parish. Currently studying at the College of the Resurrection in Mirfield Paul will be returning to his “sending parish” – a relatively rare occurrence. The news was received with joy and we will continue to hold Paul, Angela and their sons in our daily thoughts and prayers
with Rachael Elizabeth
It gladdens my heart that wonderful women and men of goodwill are blessed with the ability to hear the Call of God in our day, and to respond to that call joyfully, willingly and sacrificially. Janet, Graham, Marina, Tracy, John, Jill, Yvonne, Mimi, Ralph, Jenny, Tricia, Geb, Rebecca, Diane, Jill, Phil, Sue, David, Rachael, Paul, Ann, Bob, Ria, Ivon, Sheila, Michael, Val, Frank, Lynn, Jonnie, Margaret, Bryan – a glad and glorious procession – all these live and work in company with countless others … all of whom are known and loved and appreciated by name in the Heart of God.
The Mission of God – opening eyes, unstopping ears, bringing peace to troubled hearts and minds, breaking down barriers – especially those built by mistaken religious intent and politics-gone-bad – warped in favour of power-gone-mad, building, calling, feeding, giving water to the thirsty, healing, learning, praying, pleading, teaching – this is the joyful promise and claim of the reign (what some call the “Kingdom”) of God. And to get there takes no time …
Blessed be the Source of Life's Goodness!
It’s a long way off but inside it
There are quite different things going on:
Festivals at which the poor man
Is king and the consumptive is
Healed; mirrors in which the blind look
At themselves and love looks at them
Back; and industry is for mending
The bent bones and the minds fractured
By life. It’s a long way off, but to get
There takes no time and admission
Is free, if you will purge yourself
Of desire, and present yourself with
Your need only and the simple offering
Of your faith, green as a leaf.