Letter from the Vicar
Hearing Nat King Cole singing `Autumn Leaves start to fall,’ and with daylight becoming shorter, our minds begin to move into thinking that we need to take the foot off the pedal a bit more to appreciate the beautiful autumn colours and the change in nature around us. However, the pace of life and the things that often take up our time, even if we resist the appearance of Christmas in the shops, make us feel guilty if we want to admire the autumn sunsets or notice the smells of autumn, or the light changes, as we rake the never ending supply of fallen leaves.
Autumn can see for some people the onset of mood change as the nights lengthen and people are less active or seen as the temperatures drop, deepening a sense of isolation and loneliness. All the more reason to be aware of our neighbours and to try and make contact with those who may live on their own to offer a little warmth of friendship and offer of support. It is also important that we take care of ourselves, especially our mental health, and as autumn is a season replenishing the earth with leaves that fall and wild life gathering for the winter, so we need a bit of replenishing and time for others as well as for ourselves.
Traditionally during the autumn churches are decorated beautifully for the Harvest Festival Thanksgiving that is offered by the local farming, horticultural, growing and retail communities for God’s goodness to us reflected in the harvest of people’s skills, energy, dedication, commitment, creativity and enterprise. In the thanksgiving is also a pledge to share what we have and to be generous within our lives with those particularly are in need, or who are struggling locally or across the world.
With our eyes fixed on the tasks in hand and our minds consumed by worry or the tasks that are piling up to attend to, it is quite possible to let autumn exist but slip by without allowing it to replenish and inspire us, giving us permission to stop and take in the sights, smells and beauty of the season.