Minister's letter

A message for June

 

from the Rev. David Jones
 

 

 


 

Hope of a brighter future

 

As a Christian, it is my belief that we were created to live in community and to share what we have and what we know with others, in order that everybody can live a full and happy life.  Jesus said ‘I came that they may have life and have it abundantly' (John 10:10)


 

As I write this we are beginning to plan how we might 'be church' when the lockdown releases.  How we enable our buildings to be used for private prayer and still ensure all who wish to use the buildings are kept safe.  A system of directions, barriers and hygiene.  It all seems a little counter intuitive.  As followers of Christ, who healed the lepers with his touch (Matthew 8), we are thinking as ministers how we are the hands of Jesus on earth from a 2m distance.  Beyond this, how will people be able to gather for worship?  Life has changed, things will be different and we need to ensure that lessons are learnt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a long time we humans have been building walls around ourselves to protect what we have, to make us happy. Sometimes we do this with our friendship groups and, dare I say, we may also be guilty of this in our church communities.  We often look for what divides us from others and use that as an excuse to exclude.

 

We should be focussing on the things that unite us. Covid-19 has had a major effect on people, many have lost lives, leaving families who have not been able to say goodbye in the way they may have needed. Others will have suffered financially and many will have had a negative experience of isolation. People have lived in fear, but there is hope beyond that fear.


 

If Covid-19 has taught us anything, it is that we need each-other.  Building barriers around yourself and excluding others is not God's plan and is not what will bring us life.  Perhaps, like me, you took for granted the company of others until it was taken away.  Over the weeks we have found new ways and new technologies which have enabled us to be close to each-other in a non-physical way.  As a church community we have even managed to communicate more regularly and lift each other in prayer more often through the WhatsApp groups.


 

When I wrote my reflection for March I was unaware that by the end of the month the view of the whole world would be different.  I spoke then of a common good, but instead what we got was a common cause:  to ensure we defeat Covid-19 and in the process we have learnt to love each other.  We have learnt to show care and concern for others during this time, whether that is by putting rainbows in our windows, clapping for our carers and keyworkers, making a scarecrow as part of the trail or checking in by phone with those who might be lonely or troubled.  Perhaps you put up your dove of peace for VE day, you may even have had a socially distanced street party.  In all of these things you have brought light to others in what has been a fairly dark time and Jesus himself called us to be light to the world (Matthew 5).

 

 

When the time is right we will again be able to be together physically, but until then keep strong, engage with others as best you can and look out for each other.  The time is coming when we will see a brighter tomorrow, when not only will we have defeated Covid-19, but the world will show more love and care for one another than it did before. When people seek to be caring and kind and not isolated and withdrawn. When they look to share what we have and know and not keep it for our own glory.


 

What we need to do now is remember the lessons we have learnt at this time and take that forward into the future.  To be kind and generous to all when life is again 'normal', whatever that may look like.  To continue to think of others who may be sad or lonely and to reach out to them the hand of friendship.  Look for the good in others and help to be part of a stronger and united community.

 

 

The rainbow in your window is like a smile and a kind word in the street.  Be nice to each other and work at building bridges not walls.

 

 


Take care of yourselves and each-other,

Fr. David