Dear family in Christ,
These last months have seen renewed confidence in the full reopening of the Christ Church for worship and day to day contact and business. We began a “new” journey on Ash Wednesday and suddenly here we are at the sixth Sunday of Easter, 12 full weeks without the threat of closure or even any close calls. Our response has been significant, with growing numbers in worship and a return to the Eucharistic sacrament in both kinds, the right to sing and participate fully as we have known and to redefine as we continue the journey.
Doing without for nearly two years, in closure and to an extent, in isolation, causes us to long for things familiar and life giving in our faith journey and hopefully causes us to reflect on the abundant gift of God’s Grace, in our waiting, and in the fact that we have endured and survived the wait, a testimony to your faith and personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
I thank you for your endurance, your continued generosity in all you give to your parish church and in your partnership with the risen Christ from the first day until now.
There have been several significant changes in the last months, with our new partnership and pastoral response with St. Paul’s Roslin, as a new ministry with us. We will join with them next Sunday the 29th of May, at midday for a service of Memorial and Thanksgiving, followed by a fellowship lunch hosted by St. Paul’s. Please come and support them as we begin this new and important relationship. The 8am and 10am services are as normal that day at Christ Church, and if anyone needs a lift to Roslin, please let us know.
Today marks the final day of Shirley Dewey’s role as ‘Administrative Assistant’, a position she has held for over 8 years, and she has served us well. The demands of ‘front of house’ in a modern and busy parish are matched by our openness and welcome to all who come through our doors, from members of the parish, people off the street, suppliers, service preparations and rosters, pastoral encounters and services, all require the sensitivities due to them and the underlying commandment to love which underlines everything we do. Shirley has served us well and we are grateful for her and her continued presence in the life of the parish. At the end of the day, retirement is just a step to the renegotiation of one’s life.
Carol Feeney joins us as our new Administrative Assistant and we are thrilled to receive her.
We also today are happy to announce we have employed a new Custodian, Adam. Adam will begin work on June 1st. and we thank Clarence for his excellent work as Custodian, and a full recovery in the future.
I would also like to thank Liz Reid and Richard Bly and others for their hard work over these last 12 months of keeping the parish centre immaculate and safe.
We are blessed to have a full compliment for our Parish Council, representing every aspect and level of parish life. The thoughtfulness and openness of conversation around the table is life giving and ensures that we can both maintain and imagine to implementation what we can become in our journey as a Christian community.
On June 5th, myself and my partner Terry will be Married at Christ Church at the 10am Sunday Eucharist. The celebrant will be the Rt. Rev. Bishop Michael Oultan, and you are all most welcome to join with us and at a reception to follow after the service. The decision to make the Sunday morning Eucharist the place for our nuptials is because of the tremendous and loving support you continue to show us and that we truly see this moment in our journey as something for us all to share and celebrate as an aspect of our community of faith. Thank you for your continued expressions of love and support.
And as ever, May God the father of our Lord Jesus Christ continue to do a good work in you.
With my love and blessings,
Fr. Jeff and team