As you may have noticed from the article in the magazine I have been appointed by Bishop Paul, our Bishop of Liverpool to be the Ormskirk Area Dean, also at the same time, Andy Pugh, our reader at St Marks, has been appointed Chaplain to the Readers in Ormskirk. These are both challenging and actually privileged positions. Why do I say privileged? Well it is because when you receive such roles of authority, alongside it comes great responsibility, because of the trust and faith that has been invested in you by others in the church to be part of Gods plan for his world, particularly in this little bit of it. It is also a privilege because you are given the opportunity to see a bit more of the bigger picture of the church, it enables you to see that it is not just us on our little patch of land.
I feel it is appropriate that this news comes now in the month of November, a time of remembering.
We have Guy Fawkes night, now known as Bonfire night and like a lot of things its origins has mainly been lost in the ages of time. These days it is more a good reason to enjoy time together and be amazed by the latest fireworks that are now available.
This month we observe Remembrance Sunday, when we have time to give thoughts and thanks to all those who fought for us and our freedom. Also, it will be Children in Need Day to raise money to care for those not as lucky as others.
Guy Fawkes came about due to dissent in parliament and the government, not much change there then. Remembrance Sunday is for all those who fought in wars. We do not have to look far to see fighting unrest and harm in our world today, where people, both in the armed forces and civilians, lose their lives. Even though Children in Need began 39 years ago, and over a billion pound has been raised in that time, the need to help the most vulnerable is greater than ever. It is interesting, don’t you think, that the issues of these things although originating many years ago have not been resolved.
But an important thing I want us to remember is this; something much older than all these things I have mention has happened; in fact it is something before time even began. God had a vision and a mission for his creation; and that was to be in relationship with us all and to bless us. We in this part of the world are very blessed compared to many, aren’t we? But what about the relationship bit? God not only wants us to be in relationship with Him but with each other. It’s sometimes easy to forget that, isn’t it?
Over the past few weeks we have been running an Alpha Course, in the Parish Hall. It is a Christian Course, to remind us (or even tell us if we don’t know) of God. His mission for His world shown to us in his own Son Jesus, what Jesus did for us and what it actually means to be a Christian, have faith in God’s purpose for our life and recognise the power of The Holy Spirit living with us.
Alongside this I have attending the Bereavement Course that has been running at Bescar Lane Methodist Church and what an amazingly helpful time it has been, where we as a group have shared experiences of many different kinds of loss and grief in our lives. I have also attended training in prayers of blessing and training in healing prayer (who would have thought a vicar would need that?). But I do, …. You see to walk with God and to be a Christian is not a one off a long time ago commitment. It is a daily commitment to seek out God’s will and purpose for our life no matter what part of our life we are at. For me and Andy, we believe that God has given us a new challenge, not because we are great….or to be honest the most able, but because we have sought out his will for us.
But in all of it, even though we have been given great responsibility, we feel excited; because in this work we have asked someone much higher and in control to be responsible for us, our God. I wonder in this month of remembrance if you could remember Gods love for you and give God responsibility for your life to see where he leads you.
God Bless You,