Letter from the clergy - Friday 18 December 2020

First published on: 18th December 2020

Dear All,

This is going to be the final vicar’s letter of this year, and what a year it has been! You said goodbye to Paul as your vicar and began an interregnum. Just as you were getting used to that and preparing the paperwork for the new vicar’s advertisement, the country was placed into lockdown and we are still in some sort of restrictions now and for the foreseeable future.

During this year, we will have had many different thoughts and feelings as we have faced a situation most of us have never experienced before. There was the initial chance to pause, take stock of what is important and realise what we value. There was a chance to notice things that had gone unnoticed before. There was a spirit of togetherness and camaraderie; people actively seeking to help those in need.

Alongside these, there have been feelings of loneliness, fear of the unknown and a sense of there being no hope, together with a real worry of the consequences of Covid-19, as we watched daily infection rates, daily hospital admissions and daily death rates rise to levels that seem so hard to even comprehend.

Thankfully, towards the end of this year there has been the hope brought by the vaccine, and the light at the end of the tunnel seems to be getting brighter. As we approach our Christmas celebrations next week, I am once again reminded of the hope that we have in Jesus. As we face what, for the church and individuals across the country, will be an unusual Christmas, we can take heart that the message of Christmas has not and does not change.

This week’s bible reading sees the angel telling Mary she is to give birth to the saviour of the world.

“He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob for ever and of his kingdom there will be no end”, (Luke 1:32-33).    

In Jesus, we have a saviour who offers those who believe in Him a place in the kingdom that never ends. No matter what happens on earth, we can face it assured of that hope; the ultimate vaccine for our world.

Have a happy Christmas, stay safe and God Bless.

Gareth

A Prayer for Advent

Lord of light and love,
shine your radiance upon us,
be our light in the darkness,
our hope at times of despair,
our joy when life feels dreary.
Come, bring healing, wholeness, and life into our lives this Advent.
We ask in the precious name of Jesus, Amen.


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