The first event of my return from leave was the happy task of welcoming Archdeacon Verena to Lynton where she met the deanery clergy. During our worship together she introduced herself and preached from the story of Jesus sending out his disciples. She focused on her real sense of God's presence through the tough times of this pandemic when so much fo our church life has been stripped away and encouraged us to take time over the coming months to reflect on what is part of our renewal and what we need to leave behind. Over coffee she asked each of the clergy to talk about "what makes your heart sing" and as people spoke I had a sense that it was a bit like an act of harvesting the fruit of the last months.
Our Harvest Festivals begin this weekend - with Countisbury Harvest festival at 3pm on Sunday 26th Spetember. Here we know how important it is to give thanks to God for all that we receieve from land and sea, and to give thanks to God for all those whose work we depend on. Let's keep our farming neighbours at the centre of our prayers in the coming month. This is alos a good time for us each to reflect on the last year - to see how we can find God at work even through our dificult days: what is the harvest of your year that you can give thanks for now?
I am very grateful to the clergy, churchwardens and administrator who helped me have a peaceful break. Could I remind you to let Sam White know that you are happy for us to hold and use your contact details - an email to the [email protected] is sufficient, or the full form is attached below. Sam's work with us is helping me get back to concentrating more fully on my role as your priest, so your permission for us both to hold and use your details is a way of supporting better and wider communication across the Mission Community in the coming months.