Serving God, Serving our Community

Rector's Reflections

Welcome to the monthly blog from the Rectory…

Old Age: glory in the grey?

“Planted in the house of the Lord…. the righteous still bear fruit in old age” (Psalm 92: 13-14)  Time ticks on…   Years roll by….    Another year, another birthday…    Where are we?    What are we?    Who are we? I recently rediscovered the helpful short meditation below in a book I bought on the beautiful island of Iona in 1994 (it’s amazing to think that that was a quarter…

Glencoe: the valley of the shadow

Dear parishioners and friends, It’s hard to believe that my mountain walking holiday in Scotland was almost 3 months ago.  Long, hot, dry days and clear visibility meant we were privileged to enjoy the mountains, lochs, islands, moorland, waterfalls and woods at their best. In our modern gear we ascended 13 Munros (mountains over 3000 feet) in the Glencoe/Ben Nevis area.  We enjoyed similar views…

End of an era: the start of a new one

  This month we celebrate the end of an era: the years of recent work to restore and improve facilities at St Mary’s church for the 21stcentury.  We are deeply grateful to all those who have worked hard, fund-raised and used their time and talents to make it all possible.  We are not sad to see the scaffolding go, but it was…

Keep on travelling on

Dear parishioners and friends, Most of us will be off on our travels during the summer.    Perhaps to a familiar holiday destination, or staying with friends, or maybe to somewhere new? Our country and our world are full of varied, interesting places, with so much to discover.  I hope your holiday journeys will be enjoyable and trouble free.  Our whole life is…

Wonderful Weddings?

Despite rumours to the contrary, marriage is alive and well in 2018.  Over 90% of young people in the UK still aspire to marry and most will achieve this. Although the popular view is that marriages don’t last, two out of three first marriages last until one partner dies, and half of second or subsequent marriages also last a lifetime. At the…

It’s OK that you’re not OK

Dear parishioners and friends, Since birth as a1950s “baby-boomer, I’ve benefited from health clinics, injections, dental treatment, GPs and an appendix operation just before my geography degree final exams.  Through the following decades to my current, “mature” years, the NHS (or French equivalent) have been there.  Eating healthily and exercising regularly also play an important part, but of course nothing provides a…

Thank you for the music…

Music forms a “soundtrack” to our lives, evoking people, places, special occasions, joys and sorrows.   Hearing about these connections makes the radio show, Desert Island Discs, fascinating.  Guests can only choose 8 pieces of music, a book (plus the Bible and Shakespeare) and a luxury to take with them to the (hypothetical) desert island.  Which ones you would choose? In 1977, Abba…

Village of the Year?

Dear parishioners and friends, Being the rector of two village churches, a recent TV series (Village of the Year) caught my eye.   I managed to watch some of them (recorded to view at a convenient time).  100 shortlisted villages from all over the UK were featured on TV and eventually whittled down to just four, one from each of four huge regions.…

Faith, hope and love in Les Misérables

In 2009 an unknown 47 year-old walked on to the stage in a TV talent show.  She looked extremely unlikely to become a star.  But as she sang ‘I dreamed a dream’, the audience gasped in amazement, then  gave Susan Boyle a standing ovation.  Her song came from Les Misérables, itself an improbable candidate for global success.  Appearances can be deceptive. Like…

Celebrating Christmas and New Year…

For most of us, Christmas probably includes rushing around to buy presents, seasonal food, drink and decorations for the annual celebrations. It’s also a good opportunity to send greetings to our family and friends and hopefully to visit them too.  Many value the opportunity to pop into church for a seasonal service with familiar carols and traditions.  But are these festivities anything…