Minty’s August Letter

Perhaps inevitably, I’ve been thinking a lot about change recently—about things that change, things that remain the same, and the processes involved in change. The latter involve acknowledging loss, letting go of some people or things and a time of transitioning or moving on into a new place or way of being. These all are processes that we at St Matt’s are engaged in now or will be during the Vacancy.

Change can trigger feelings of insecurity. However, as we go through the coming months we need to hold onto the fact that our true and fundamental security is found in God who remains constant. We can rely on God whose faithfulness, mercy, grace and love are unchanging and greater than we can possibly imagine. God, who in his constancy, is always calling his people onwards and to new things. We see this in the Old and New Testaments, in the Church’s story and around us today.

We are called to go with God, to follow him and listen to him ‘so that [we will] know the way that [we] should go, for [we] have not passed this way before’ (Joshua 3:4Open Link in New Window), to quote from the text of Mat’s last sermon. One of the ways that we do this is in our praying.

In some advice for churches in vacancy produced by CPAS (one of our patrons), Bob Jackson gives 15 tips or steps to take; the final step is PRAY!!! He writes, “Prayer is placed at the end not because it is a tag-on extra but because it is the most important thing. This is the climax of the advice not the tailpiece. It is the one thing above all others that should lodge in the memory bank—pray!… Praying is the most vital thing to do because prayer works—if you want the church to thrive you have to keep talking to and listening to its head!”

When we met as a church to hear and think about the vacancy on 15th July, it was enormously encouraging to see how people’s thoughts turned to prayer and to be part of the time we spent praying that evening. That was just the beginning. We need to keep praying daily individually, and, together as a church. So, every Tuesday evening in August there will be an opportunity to come together at church between 7.30 & 8.30pm to pray together. To pray for God’s wisdom and leading for the Wardens, the PCC, and particularly the Parish Reps (Vanessa Conte & Phil May) and our Patrons (the Bishop & CPAS) as they work together through the Vacancy process & towards the appointment of a new vicar. And keep on praying for each other!

Minty

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