St Michael’s 29th December 2019
Readings – Isaiah 9:1-7; Isaiah 42:1-7; Luke 2:21-32
There is little doubt that 2019 has been an extraordinary year in the life of our church. It seems hard to believe now, but twelve months ago our Tuesday Open Church Project hadn’t even been launched. Yes, we had plans and we were praying hard, but nobody was quite sure what would happen when we opened the doors of the church each week, or indeed who would come.
Also this time last year I was still simply the vicar of St Michael and St Barnabas. My regular ministry at St Aubyn’s hadn’t yet begun and again, I don’t think anyone anticipated how well the link between the two churches would work. We still haven’t yet figured what to call the united benefice of St Michael’s and St Barnabas with St Aubyn’s but I am sure we will get there in the New Year – it is a minor detail, after all.
Oh, and this time last year we still had no idea that Sue would come and work among us as our curate. We were still planning her long placement and wondering how everything would work out. I think it is fair to say, four months after her ordination, she now seems an integral part of the life of the church.
There have been other developments during the past year as well, the relaunch of the pastoral action team, for example, or the newly formed leadership team which regularly meets to oversee the life of the church. And although so much good has happened, as in any year, there have been bumps and bruises along the way. In this respect 2019 has been no different from any other, and as we reach the end of the year, there are some things we must definitely leave at the cross before going any further.
So what about you? How do you look back at the past year? I guess for some of us the past year has been one of great success, of plans fulfilled, of dreams realised, or at least steady and quiet progress. But I also know that for many of us 2019 has been a year of great challenges, of circumstances which have pushed us to our very limits, of illness and infirmity, of loss and bereavement. Read the rest of this entry »