Letter from the Vicar & Notices

Letter from the Vicar

My dearest friends in Christ,
It has been quite a week as I have bumbled my way through the complex rhythms and
tones of the church and the school. It has been exhausting and invigorating! I have
been very aware of guidance of the Spirit as I have navigated my way through.
Without such guidance I suspect I may have fallen into a heap in my office. The
support of Fr Peter and Fr Craufurd has been invaluable, and I thank both of them for
their kind patience, guidance and collegiality. We are very lucky to have such
wonderful priests serving at S. Michael’s.
It has been a very steep learning curve. It is a bit like becoming a curate again. With
that comes the joy of learning new ways of being and serving, but also the difficulty of
having once felt competent, but now starting again.
I trust God in all of this. It is his Church, and I am his servant.
The Gospel this week leads us to a somewhat less calming place. The execution of
John the Baptist reminds us of the harshness of the world. The circumstances in
which this occurs remind us also of the darkness that can and does reside with
humanity. We see a cast of characters all concerned with power and appearance. We
see the lengths humanity will go to retain control and power over others. It is
shocking and brutal.
And we can be a party to this behaviour if we allow ourselves to be seduced by the
allure of power. Instead of letting go, we can try to control everything. In this reading
today, we see the extreme results of such behaviour. It is no accident that Jesus is not
present in this reading. It is as if we are seeing how things can be without letting him
into our way of being. We are seeing how things can be when we try to be in charge,
and don’t acknowledge the presence of God in all things.
In my own place this week, and when contemplating today’s Gospel, I have returned
to Julian of Norwich. Her most well-known words have helped me:
All shall be well,
and all shall be well
and all manner of thing shall be well.
Indeed, they shall be.
They shall be, because God is in all things.

Fr. Chris


Parish Notices

> Weekly bulletin The Harvest is Plentiful… advertises job vacancies within the
Diocese. If you are interested in receiving an electronic copy now or in the future,
please contact the Parish Administrator.

> Health & Safety Committee invites more volunteers to join the group.
Please speak to Michael Graveston.

> St Michael’s School is on holiday until 23 July.

> Bible Study Group meets tomorrow, 7:15 pm in the parish lounge.
Details Peter Oakley (960 0974).

> Women’s Fellowship pot-luck lunch on Tuesday. All welcome.
For details of time and place please contact Pat Evans (358 0127).

> Meditation Group: meets in the Lady Chapel, Wednesdays 12 noon.
Details Margaret Maclagan (359 9215) or Pat Evans (358 0127).

> Vicarage Building Fund: soup and home baking available next Sunday.
Please continue to support this venture by bringing cash to buy the tasty offerings.

> The Christchurch Meditation Community: Day of Reflection, 28 July, 10:00 to
3:00 pm, Chapel Street Centre, Harewood Rd. Revd Hilary Oxford Smith will
speak about Celtic Christianity. Please bring your own lunch; morning tea is
provided. Koha $10.

> Spring Choral Festival 19 August: RSCM combined choir invites participants.

> Electronic Devices wanted for recycling: old mobile phones, tablets etc.

> Book Swap: in the parish lounge. Koha to parish.

> Inasmuch basket: please continue to support the City Mission with your gifts
of groceries and other household items, particularly during the winter months.
Suggested items: baked beans, spaghetti, tinned soup, tinned fruit, cereal,
toilet paper, toothpaste and soap.