Blog & Post 15th November

"My hope to follow Julie......"

Bob’s Hymn of the Week this week is “O Jesus I have Promised”, a hymn which has particular memories for me of secondary school days especially that line in the last verse “my hope to follow duly….” 

Julie M. was in my class and all the 15 year old  boys behind her would chorus in that hymn…. “my hope to follow Julie….”  She would merely turn and and cast a disdainful and withering glance which silenced the choir. 

Imagine my delight when I was cast in Hobson’s Choice to play opposite Julie playing Maggie who I had to kiss on stage.  I was never the coolest of  lads at school, far from it…. but my street cred. rocketed the day after the first performance….   wherever they are now. Photograph at the bottom of this page!  It was nothing to do with that play (honestly!) that I left that school that year at the age of 15 to go to the local college-( the story of my being asked not to return after the Summer holiday is for another time:) ) but that was a sudden end to my friendships with any of that group so I think of all those lads who wanted to follow Julie where I went on, eventually,  to ‘follow duly in His strength alone….. ‘ and spare a thought and a prayer for Julie and the rest of that cohort 

Social Media Memes of thee week....

Mental Health and wellbeing in schools- a focus for prayer.

This week as a School Governor I attended a Webinar about Well-Being and Mental Health in Schools. Its a Government initiative – it being cheaper to send out a power-point presentation than to make sure there are enough mental health professionals available for schools to use. (Forgive my cynicism / realism) 

Although I learned little I did not already know it was certainly a salutary reminder about the stresses of working in Schools which have been amplified significantly by the Covid crisis.  It is an issue for staff and children.  The stress on staff this year is incredible – and it is enormous every year. here is a recent post from a teacher about her life – click here.

In Cornwall and other areas of deprivation (rural and urban poverty) the knock on effects to mental health in school are predictable.  If you did not see the Simon Reeve on Cornwall programme last week you can see it on BBC iPlayer  –

Imagine  how the effects of deprivation described in the programme impact on schools.  Children living in precarious housing and unstable family situations are at terrible risk of all sorts of abuse and schools are expected to be there to pick up the pieces.  Parents can quick to complain, the government is quick to unleash an inspection system designed to undermine confidence and few are there to praise and give thanks for the work they do. So no written  intercessions this week…..  my prayers will be focussed on school staff and vulnerable children and I encourage you to add yours.  

Miss Mole's class (2:1) at Harborne Hill School, Birmingham.

this was a couple of years before the Story- but I will  leave you to guess where I am in the picture and who Julie was.  Gold star for anyone who can guess both correctly. 

The Annual Quiet Day for Readers in December.

The quiet day at Epiphany house has been cancelled this year due to the problems of Covid. 

Would anyone like an online / ZOOM quiet day on Saturday December 12th? I would envisage beginning at 9:45 with time to chat, opening prayers at 10 and  a reflection followed by time for quiet or to have a one to one conversation. Further reflections and breaks to follow and finishing with prayers at 3:45. Let me know what you think.

Forthcoming Zoom for Readers

There is still time to join in the Bishop’s study day on Tuesday on Setting God’s People Free,  just click here and book a place. 

Don’t forget that Bishop Hugh will be in conversation with readers on Monday 23rd November at 6pm and Wednesday 25th at 10:30 a.m. More on that next week.


Live Streaming the Service.....

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