From a book called “Fearfully and Wonderfully Weird!” – it made me laugh. 

Fearfully and Wonderfully Weird: Amazon.co.uk: Peterson, Doug, Tutte, H.Winfield: 9780310287315: Books

 

SALTS of The Earth  (Matthew 5:13) 

The first part of this week the tide was out far enough to exercise the hound at Portreath. There are usually very few people about just after dawn but the holiday season has certainly had an impact if only in the amount of litter left lying about from the barbecues and beach parties from the night before. and sometimes the stray revellers themselves sleeping it off at the top of the beach.  This week I met with a couple from Barnsley, down for a two week stay with their grandchildren. They were on honeymoon, having married at Truro registry office. In the course of a 15 minute chat during which the hound got bored and went down to investigate the flat sea I discovered that he was an ex-coal miner and heard of various exploits and that she had been litter-picking, because that was ‘what she did at home’. Later in the week we came across her again with a full bin liner!  What a community minded lady! A true salt of the earth.

On Thursday I did a funeral visit to the friendly and welcoming family of a chap who had worked in South Crofty Tin mine and various other places in the local area. A man of a thousand stories the vast majority of which are too rude to tell. He had been brought up in a strict Plymouth Brethren family, his sister becoming a Methodist and him rejecting religion.  This was especially when he was told in no uncertain terms that he was not good enough to attend a funeral function at a local church.. When I asked what the children had inherited character-wise from their dad the reply was, “oh… swearing (laughter) and tattoos and straight talking….. ‘  The more I sat and listened the more I thought that if one wanted to find Jesus, he would more than likely be sitting with this chap and his family or joining the lady on Portreath Beach to pick litter at dawn.

It is a great privilege to be able to listen to people’s stories to congratulate them on their weddings and to console them at their family funerals….  what a joy it is to be a Reader. 

 

 

Following the email from +Philp this week with materials for the Service of Holy Communion by Extension  – I met with our Rector, Caspar on Thursday afternoon for a discussion about and exploration of the materials, the issues and the practicalities around making sure that we could do it justice. 

I note that there is a page on the diocesan website ; Public Worship with Communion by Extension – Truro Diocese : Truro Diocese  unfortunately at the time of writing this there was nothing in it apart from the title.  However here is a link to the excellent PILGRIM course on the Eucharist. The Eucharist (Book 6) (pilgrimcourse.org) 

If all goes to plan I should be doing my first Holy Communion by Extension Sunday Service at St Stephen’s Treleigh in coming weeks if their PCC decides they want me to do it…..  I will be interested to see, More on these services as the year unfolds.  

Whatever the outcome of CBE and whether or not we build these services into our rotas as part of the rich tapestry of ministry in Redruth the opportunity to sit and talk at depth about things at the heart of our faith and practice are to be treasured.  

The latest from Reader John Wallis – se more of his work here: John Wallis’ – Illustrated Poetry Gallery – Chaplain to Readers in the Diocese of Truro (readers-chaplain.org.uk) or follow him on Facebook for the regular updates. 

Happy Golden Wedding Anniversary t Anne and Andrew Hicks for Wednesday 14th!

I have been leading a ZOOM version of the Living in Love and Faith Course which is something of a curate’s egg in that some things are very good and others less than efficacious.  The videos which explore the experiences and lives of Christians in different circumstances are by far the best part of the course  and have opened up the greatest amount of discussion and conversation.  The young, but very worthy presenters have had a number of reactions from the group including being rather patronizing, like play school presenters, reminiscent of Chris and Poy and speaking as if the official view of the established church is what “we believe” which, as the group has progressed is inaccurate at best.

The thing that has struck me most is the pain that many LGBTQ+ Christians go through in their journeys and specifically the pain caused by attitudes engendered by specific theology or doctrine.

My personal take on this from my lofty and somewhat privileged  demographic as an AMHCB (Ageing Middle-class, Heterosexual, Christian, Bloke) is that all our attitudes and opinions should stem from the very simple premise that it is about being good disciples and following Jesus’ command that we should love one another as he loved us. Us  AMHCB’s are pretty insulated from the difficulties many others face in their journeys so I am only too aware of the way in which pieces like this can sound patronising! Listening, Talking, discussing and learning are important here but more than anything else we should be  seeking to listen to people’s stories so that we may understand their situations and have some empathy for their pain. (an that also goes for the issues faced by women, especially women in ministry.) 

Reader / Licensed Lay Minister Colleagues I do urge you to take part in this, to register and to look at the stories no matter what your theological stance on this.

******

A couple of weeks ago I volunteered to be on the Church of England Ministry Mentor Directory and signed up to do the training which was very interesting and although I learned nothing new it did affirm that which I did know and have been practicing.

During the course I had a conversation with Keiren Bohan who is the coordinator of the Open-Table Network and is a Living in Love and Faith Chaplain and part of the National Team. His organisation seeks to support LGBTQ+ Christians though a network of Churches and it might be helpful to know the links in case you need to pass them on pastorally to help someone….. or indeed if it provokes you to have some more practical response.

The Open-Table Network’s response to LLF is worth Reading – here…. Open Table Network trustees respond to Church Of England’s Living In Love & Faith project — Open Table Network

I have just purchased a book that poses the question “Is it possible to hold a positive view of same-sex relationships while being a biblically rooted evangelical?” 

 Jayne Ozanne ed. anthology https://journeysingraceandtruth.com/

with contributions from a wide variety of people including several Bishops,

In this week’s Church Times: “Open Table: LGBT Christians ‘need more support’ LGBT Christians have been adversely affected by national lockdowns, be – cause they have lacked access to in-person emotional and spiritual support, a new report from the Open Table Network (OTN) suggests. OTN became a charity in March; it currently supports 18 LGBT church communities. “These are all people who have experienced prejudice and exclusion at home, in the workplace, local community, but especially in faith communities,” its report, prepared by Civil Society Consulting, explains. It recommends increasing OTN communities over the next three to five years and improving the running of existing groups to better “welcome, affirm and empower” LBGT Christians. This should be done by focusing on well-being, reduced social isolation, safe spaces, faith, and volunteering, it says”

You might also be interested in this independent report into the well-being of LGBTQ+ Christians and the need for Support OTN case for support June 2021 web 

There is a huge range of opinion and interpretation of theology by Readers across the Diocese  and the issues  can be both deeply personal and faith testing. That testing applying not just to LGBTQ+ Christians who are called to worship as part of a faith community or are called to ordination or Reader ministry but to those who feel that LGBTQ+ is profoundly challenging to their own take on theology and ‘Christian behaviour’….. I offer no answers, merely the suggestion that we should all engage in the conversation, listen to the stories and challenge our own views where appropriate.

If your parish/ benefice/ cluster is not engaging in the Living in Love and Faith Course but you would like to do a ZOOM version with other Readers – perhaps on a Wednesday evening I am happy to organise that.

Deacon’s marriage to divorcee halts her priesting (churchtimes.co.uk) And for Christians who are divorced there is also a good deal of pain and problem . See this week’s Church Times.

 

The Reader Service October 9th 2021

We are hopeful of, and in may ways counting on a service in Truro Cathedral this year which I would like to think will be streamed on the Internet as well for those who cannot join us there. 

The preparations begin shortly and Reader Claire Saltzman is coordinating the preparations. The Warden’s Committee chaired by Bishop Hugh meets on the 27th of this month  where possible preacher, readers etc. will be discussed.  In the last few years those who have been licensed for the first time have been asked to assist with Chalices- I wonder if we will be using them by then!

If you are feeling called to preach, lead the intercessions, deacon or read a lesson and would like your name mentioned please do let me know.  When I preached at the service I was asked to choose my own readings and  allowed about eleven minutes.  If you know another Reader whose preaching is outstanding but might not put themselves forward  please do let me know. 

I did like the hymns suggested by the group about to be licensed but sadly these were vetoed and we were told that we would have the previous year’s hymns.

If you have any thoughts about the service that you would like the organising group or the Warden’s committee to consider please do email me and I will make sure your views are represented. 

Of Communion by Extension and the lost art of Matins. 

Writing when in need of a holiday 🙂 

When I began my training as  Reader back in 1986 my  role, and indeed my vocation was very different although it was still focused on working with parts of the community as someone with some theological training, some communication skills and a real call to change things for the better. 

My duties: 

  • Sung matins
  • Sung evensong
  • the occasional sermon for a Sunday communion service. 
  • reading lessons (readers robed for this) no-one in the congregation was asked. 
  • Some sick communions
  • Leading a youth group and a house group 

Somehow in the three and a half decades up to the present day many of those non eucharistic services disappeared and the diet of communion services became “what we have always done!” and, not only what they have always done but, “if we can’t have the service as we have always done it then we will go somewhere else.”

I have always resisted discussions about Communion by Extension  (not including sick communions or residential homes) because I did not want to be what I thought of as being some sort of second class ordained person.   But in a few weeks time I am taking my first “Communion by Extension” service at St Stephen’s Treleigh, where I used to do my sung Matins.

Times change and the needs of the people change but I am still mildly uncomfortable at preserving the status quo as a “not quite the real thing” version of “what we have always done.” 

I do wonder as we prepare to take on board the “On the Way” programme in September where we go from here! The energy I had for change in my late thirties is harder to come by and chaplaincy, spiritual direction, funerals the occasional sermon together with chief ZOOM service operator are more he order of the day. I hit the magic Permission to Officiate mark in February and one is tempted just to go with the flow rather than being the prophet who stirs the pot! 

Tomorrows readings are interesting – I love the Ezekiel line “4The descendants are impudent and stubborn. I am sending you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ ” which reminds me of when I have tried hard to change things in the past in church. In the Gospel reading we have that wonderful line from Jesus who says ” 4Then Jesus said to them, ‘Prophets are not without honour, except in their home town'” which sums up many a reader’s position, being prophets in our home towns while ordained clergy are largely moving through.  

But we keep on keeping on and looking to God and to the community to seek that which will serve the people best and……. and this is important…… grown the kingdom not merely keep the status quo. 

Your answers on the back of a postage stamp, stuck to an envelope and addressed to Never-Never Land. 

 

Cornwall – we need you!

Can you talk with passion to audiences both large and small?

Would you like to help the most vulnerable children in the UK?

If so, please support us by becoming a Volunteer Speaker for The Children’s Society! We are in desperate need for Volunteer Speakers across Cornwall.

We need people like you to make a real difference by increasing awareness of our vital work.  By reaching out and sourcing talks in your local community you will inspire people to support us and strengthen our ties with your local area, through churches, schools and businesses.  You will thank existing supporters and motivate new people to get involved in our work and donate their time, money, voice and prayers.

We want your time with us to be enjoyable and rewarding as well as impactful, which is why we will provide you with all of the support and training you need to be effective in your role and to get the most out of volunteering.

As restrictions continue to lift in the UK, why not try something new and join The Children’s Society family?

For an informal chat about the role, please contact Jess Meale, Relationships Manager on 07715 510 464 (Wed-Fri) or email jess.meale@childrenssociety.org.uk

Highlight of the Week:

The virtual visit of Rabbi Naomi from Kol Chai Hatch End Reformed synagogue who spoke about her faith journey and her work to the Reader’s Post licensing Group. 

I am delighted that she has agreed to come back next year for the next group to help with our multi-faith conversations. 

Reader Kay Short asked on Facebook: Kay Short

“Can new to the Diocese Readers join in too? And do any (evening) groups exist for Readers to continue learning and reflection that I could join please? If not, could I start one? I miss being able to read and reflect theologically with others!”
 

Well I would be delighted if Kay started an evening for reflection and learning and would be the first to sign up if it is an evening when I am not already tied up.  

If you would find this helpful drop me a line and I will pass it on to Kay. The Monday Morning Chat will remain open on ZOOM although I am not promising to always be in attendance but several people have asked for something with a little more focus in an evening.  I am happy to host the ZOOM so that Readers from across the Diocese can take part. 

 

You can read something about Rabbi Naomi here: From a BBC newsroom to the pulpit as a rabbi – The Jewish Chronicle (thejc.com)

and you can read more about the Hatch End Reformed Jewish Community Here!

Prayer and my Mobile Phone

Attitudes to mobile phones and other technology van be quite polarized…  the press portrays the evils of teenagers peering into mobile phone screens and not speaking to anyone, at our  toddler group at church the leaders have noted the parents who spend the session on their phones and not playing with their children and then there are those who speak of Facebook as ‘facade- book’ and paint pictures of users as needy folk seeking approval, or as bullies, stalking and trolling the more vulnerable. 

Of course all those pictures are true of some people but life is not as simple as the easy stereotype that we can all feel cross about.  Teenagers are all very different and some have never spoken to other people finding something to bury themselves in for all time…. social media has been a God-send to isolating people of all ages in the past year,  and as for trolls and stalkers….. well they really are a hazard of the technological age. 

I really like my mobile phone and use it a lot….. but probably its chief function is as a camera! On my hour or so of dog walking in the early mornings I am always looking for a picture, something that shows the glory of God’s creation, or that tells a story or something that just fascinates.  Checking the weather, tide time tables and following footpaths on the installed ordnance survey maps probably comes a close second.  And then of course are the radio programmes I have downloaded to listen to while I am out…. the most regular being ‘something Understood’ which I really wish they were still producing rather than running old ones.  If I use social media it is to communicate with others – often putting up photographs which bring great joy to those who cannot get out of their houses, or their beds to see the subjects. 

So I feel irritated when folks dismiss the phone as a completely bad thing!  All technology can be used badly but to dismiss it altogether is to throw many babies out with much bathwater.  From the lady who joins morning prayer from her hospital bed on ZOOM to the sharing of ideas on the diocesan face book page to the reflective short prayers of the Bodmin Hermit on Twitter and happy birthday wishes that show the lonely that they are not alone…. the phone has its uses,  So I am off to open my Daily prayer app for compline. 

 

The Office Computer that conspired against my Day off! 

The last year is taking its toll on my energy levels, that and having a dog that needs to be walked early in the morning so I find myself in need of a rest and some time off. The trouble is there is always something that jumps in the way.  My Rector, Caspar kindly made sure I had no commitments last Sunday and I duly took the opportunity to take a book to the conservatory and put my feet up….. the telephone went!  The call was from the church office where the photocopier was not talking to the new computer and to cut a long story short three days later and a dozen hours of research I solved it…. but my time out had disappeared. Mind you I just HAD to solve it…. !!

I am planning to take two weeks out in August….. this year.  In the meantime I wonder if anyone has thought about whether they are called to be the next chaplain to Readers – or to be an assistant Chaplain…. let me know if you feel that that might be you! 

In the Blog this week reflections on:

  • The Reader Selection Day last week
  • Living in Love and Faith Session 2
  • For I went to the stall where they sold sweet lavender
    (“Only a penny for a bunch of lavender!”).
  • The joys of being an ex-teacher 

My dear wife, Lez, holding a box of lavender plants sent to us by Rocket Gardens     by an ex-pupil, Paige who had heard of Lez’s awful service from Suttons seeds who had sent the order so late and so badly packaged that nearly all of the plants were dead and not fit for purpose.  If you click Lez’s picture it will take you to Rocket Garden’s very impressive online shop  based near Helston. We shall be using them in future – so this is a free plug!! 

 

The Suttons Seeds offering

In the last 12 months an ex-student has helped me to rebuild my computer to make it fit for ZOOM and editing video, anther had recued the gardener and others have sent lots of cheery messages and news….. still others I have seen as teachers and health service workers doing such a brilliant job in times of great stress. I count myself very lucky, and just a tad proud, to have known them and to have ben part of their education for a couple of years. 

 Jane LePage has asked if I will publish the Tear Fund Link…. Click HERE and add the work of Tear Fund to Your Prayers

If you have not watched the Simon Reeves programmes on Cornwall yet- you can still find them here… BBC Two – Cornwall with Simon Reeve

Last Saturday 6 men and women presented themselves on ZOOM  at the selection day to train as Readers beginning in September. 

We congratulate 4 of them on being selected and I ask your prayers for them as they face the hard work of studies over the next two or three years. Please also keep in your prayers those who were not selected and are still searching for what they are being called to by God. 

Presenting yourself to have your vocation, the task you think you may be called for, examined so closely calls for bravery, honesty, faith and trust  and it is a huge privilege to be on the panel that listens to their personal stories and their answers to some really deep and stretching questions. 

Each of the six was asked to tell a story suitable for all age worship to the other members of the Wardens Advisory Committee and the others hoping for selection and then have an hour long in-depth interview as well as lunch with the rest of the Wardens committee on Zoom.  Thank you to all of them. 

Last Wednesday I led the second Living in Love and Faith Course on ZOOM for a Redruth Benefice group. Session two produced some wonderful in-depth discussion and sharing of quite diverse ideas and feelings. The course video was a step up from the first one and really is well worth doing.  Do consider offering the course in your area… it is a great one for Readers to Lead!

This morning, Saturday 19th June I am at the first of two sessions (10 till 1) before going on the National List of Vocations Mentors. More on this next time as I am typing this in the coffee break! But so far what an enthusiastic bunch of people! 

The Reader Journey draft diagram…. Reader journey diagram v1

On Sunday, I am leading a service in a Methodist Church for the fist time since 2019 so I am quite looking forward visiting Centenary (sent’n’ri) but I do wish we were not wearing masks and allowed to sing! If I am not leading a service, I would really rather be at home in my study running the ZOOM service in comfort. 

Zoom is to the fore tomorrow (Saturday 12th) when some brave men and women who have felt a call towards Reader Ministry, have to tell a story, attend a lunch (online) with the Warden’s committee and have a searching interview. They will be informed at the end of the day whether they have been selected. It is not a competition and all, some or none may go on. 

On Wednesday I attended my third C2 session in 10 days with another on Monday – at least as a trainer I can also get my own safeguarding up to date which meant that I have had to redo the reflections and exercises but I have found it very beneficial in  Benefice terms and it has prompted me to make some forms to collect details form all our churches about DBS checks, training levels and risk assessments. It is the first step in encouraging the next round of training, although some of the Church Wardens tell me they are on a waiting list for C2 courses because so many people want training.  It is a good sign when people are looking to be trained. 

On Tuesday I went to the Bishop’s Study Day which I found both informative and thought-provoking although on a different day I might be quite critical of some of the technical bits of the presentation.  I would love to have another session on the topic but this time focussing on Cornwall’s demographic and how we encourage greater diversity in our churches. When the first speaker was telling us about being turned away, or not exactly being welcomed at services in her own diocese I could not help but picture her arriving at the doors of St Andrews Redruth, or actually any of our benefice churches. Her problem would not be being turned away but how to escape the clutches of the welcome, and avoid being on the PCC, helping with the Arts Festival and being signed up for the Toddler Group before the end of her visit.  That might sound a little flippant but Mean it in all seriousness – the only group that might have real problems of prejudice might be those who look like they might be drunk or on drugs, or “not altogether ‘wholesome’! ”  However, I really have not investigated attitudes in our churches but I would imagine that there is a wide range with some fringe extremes as their are about women’s ministry.  Interesting and needs more work….. I just don’t know how!

The other big event was leading the first of the Living in Love and Faith sessions on ZOOM. Having gone through the first session again with our Rector, Caspar, we felt that the lack of any story videos in the first session was to miss an important element so we decided to insert two. It proved a good decision because they were easily the highlight that provoked most discussion and deep thinking. The two young presenters reminded at least one participant of ‘Play School’ presenters – wonderfully earnest, enthusiastic, bright eyed and wholesome. We are looking forward to session two and some more deep and thought-provoking breakout room discussions.  I really do think that all our church members should be engaging in the course in one way or another and that perhaps the equalities issues need a similar treatment. 

 

Perhaps the highlight of the working week was as spiritual director…. or really spiritual accompaniment which I always find as helpful as I hope my directees do.  

The Barney the collie stories continue on his page! 

 

Life seems to be gathering in pace rather like Barney’s rubber ball rolling down the beach towards the sea…. as I am inextricably drawn to gallop after it as best as my ancient hips will allow.  I find myseld unexpectedly preaching on Sunday at Treleigh in their somewhat delapidated hall (the church is being re-decorated) which will be a joy. Then there is a short worship to prepare for next Saturday for  thr start of the Readers in Training selection / discernment day Please pray for all those putting themeselves forward for Reader Training that they might show the best of themselves and that the Holy Spirit will guide us and lead us to wise choices. 

Next Sunday I have my first Methodist service for well over a year at the wonderful Centenary Methodist Church in Camborne which some of you will know is the centre of much foodbank work and where Don Gardener, who has been such a prominent figure in fighting poverty in Cornwall, worships. Faith and mustard seeds seem good starting points there!

Alongside that in Redruth we are beginning our series of Living in Love and Faith Groups – mine is on Wednesday evening on ZOOM and really should be very interesting. If you have not logged on the the Living in Love and Faith website and seen any of the fantastic resources and well prepared video stories I would urge you to do so. Living in Love and Faith | The Church of England Just click this link! 

 

It is amazing how things present themselves as a focus for instant prayer especially when I am out with Mr. Dog. This morning we found a string of blooms scattered along the tide line presumably washed up from a short time at sea.  I wondered why they had been in the sea and considered a dropped bouquet, or scattered flowers at a scattering of ashes or thrown into the waves by someone who has had their offer of undying love rejected along with their flowers. 

Whatever the story of these flowers and that long stemmed red rose my prayers were for all those anonymous people and all those stories being written in real life as I write. 

Reader / Licenced Lay Ministry Administration

You shuld all have received a letter from Bishop Hugh about this and also requesting you to consider putting yourself forward to help with safeguarding training. If you missed the letter you can find it here… The Warden’s Page – Chaplain to Readers in the Diocese of Truro (readers-chaplain.org.uk)

I joined in the ZOOM C2 training that is running currently and was really impressed by the quality of discussion and questioning and how attitudes to safeguarding have changed positively since I began to be involved as a trainer. It is a role I am delighted, and indeed privileged to be doing once more. 

Do consider it if you have teaching and leading skills…. it is SO important. 

Yes I know it is  a wild goose and Pentecost was last week, but this is a plug for the Lindisfarne Scriptorium which produces the most wonderful cards and art work and all sorts of other resources.  New Products for May 2021, Lindisfarne Scriptorium, Treasures for the Journey (lindisfarne-scriptorium.co.uk) 

 

REPORT ON THE FUTURE OF READER MINISTRY- Prepared by the Diocesan Reader Ministry Working Party 

ReaderWPreport (Final) May 2021 this is the link to the   

This report is important reading for all Readers / Licensed Lay Ministers.

It represents a good deal of consultation with Readers / LLMs in the diocese and has been ably and efficiently chaired by Reader- David Fieldsend who compiled it.  please do read it.

The report is now a standing item on the agenda of the Wardens group for consideration.  If something is relatively easy to implement it will be done but some things will need to be presented to bodies such as the Diocesan Ministry team to consider and to respond to. I will be keeping you informed as I hear the outcomes.

The working party was made up of the following people:

David Fieldsend (Chair)
Lay Chair, Carnmarth North Deanery Synod
Jim Seth (Warden’s Committee Liaison)
Readers’ Chaplain
Rev Helen Baber
Rector, Lann Pydar Benefice
Rev Caspar Bush
Rural Dean, Carnmarth North
Roy Cooper
Reader, St Melors Linkinhorne
Jane Darlington
Reader, Waterside Churches
Liz Lane
Reader, St Neot & Warleggan
Tony Le Fevre
Reader, Camborne Cluster

With low tides in the mornings Mr. Dog has had his walks on the beach this week and we have walked through quite a range of weather from the glorious sunrise above to the bleakness of the rainy beach this morning buffeted along by gale force winds.  

But how grateful am I to be out in that to see the Wild Geese sweeping across the sky. 

Stained Glass Goose that arrived in timely fashion on the doorstep- a present from some worship leaders I was training. The Holy Spirit turns up when needed! 🙂

This is the week of Thy Kingdom Come    when we have been encouraged in all sorts of prayer but to pray especially for 5 people which I have certainly done, and begun a new prayer note book. It is not a journal or a diary although it might have some dates but it helps sometimes to write down names and situations that people ask me to pray for as well as thinking and praying through other situations and groups. 

Keeping an up to date Reader’s prayer list is a……. 

Every time I see the wild geese I am reminded of the Celtic metaphor for the Holy spirit- imagine a wild goose landing on your shoulder rather than a gentle dove… those of us called to ministry may well have experienced this feeling! When we step out into something new trusting that the Holy Spirit will be with us to guide us sometimes it may not feel very comforting but we certainly know the direction in which we must go!

This is the week of Thy Kingdom Come     continued…….

Keeping an up to date Readers prayer list is a near impossible task because one is operating in a vacuum where unless you go chasing there are no updates and no-one tells you who needs to be on the list or taken off the list. Mt admiration to Joy Gunter who kept it going for so long. 

So my own prayer note-book records those I am old about who I am praying for and anonymously those who need prayer who I have not been told about. 

It is a bit like the task set for Tregeagle up on Bodmin Moor….. 

 

Tomorrow I am preaching for Pentecost in church and online at the same time…. and I am grateful for the Monday Morning Reader’s group where we discussed the readings! It was very helpful and I think we may spend a little time each week with the readings for the following Sunday- perhaps with a different volunteer leading the discussions. 

So a few facts about Wild Geese…..

Wild Geese are fascinating birds, apart from being scary, and display interesting behaviours we might learn from …

·          flying in the V formation gives geese a seventy-one per cent increase in flying range, with flapping wings creating an updraft for the bird following.  Flying is a co-operative business, 

·         the lead goose in the V formation does not, of course, experience this updraft and so tires faster than the others.  When the lead goose tires, it drops back into the formation and another goose takes over the lead.

·         when a goose falls out of the formation, it feels the drag and resistance of flying alone, and quickly gets back into the formation. 

·         when a wild goose is sick or wounded, or shot down, two others follow it to help and protect it until it recovers or dies, while the others continue to fly on.  When the goose recovers or dies, a new formation is created, heading in the same direction as the first.

 

·         when geese are flying in formation, those flying behind honk to encourage those in front to keep up speed. 

 

09:55:21 From Hugh Nelson : This is the report on Reader ministry that Imogen has just referred to – https://transformingministry.co.uk/publications-handbooks/#resourcing-sunday-to-saturday-faith
09:56:04 From Hugh Nelson : And you can read Kingdom Calling here – https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2020-10/Kingdom%20Calling%20Web%20Version.pdf
09:57:04 From Lydia Remick : Thank you +Hugh
09:58:53 From Hugh Nelson : https://transformingministry.co.uk/
10:13:40 From Lydia Remick : Amen, thank you Imogen
10:36:59 From David Fieldsend : We seem to have a tension between training that could be accessible and modular and losing the benefit of training readers and clergy side by side.
10:37:03 From Claire Salzmann : We 5 agreed to disagree!

10:37:37 From Lydia Remick : My husband is drilling so I will type. Biggest things in our room were concern about ‘dumbing down’ of training if it was modular v’s the accessibility if we want working age people to be able to training with more flexibility.

10:37:48 From Sue Wilcox : Encouraging ideas and thoughts from Imogen
10:37:53 From Robin West : We thought modular was a good idea but must ensure we do not dilute theology study.
10:37:55 From Deborah Crocker : I liked the idea of modules to top up training but was less certain of that as a way to do initial training as the danger was losing the benefits of a group working through tricky material together and supporting one another
10:38:19 From Richard Laugharne : Richard from Room 2: we agreed with Imogen that the idea of modules was a good one; but character formation and supervision is as important for leadership and accountability. Need both skills and attitudes suitable for spiritual leadership.
10:38:35 From Richard Laugharne : Happy to speak
10:38:58 From Jane Kneebone : Ordained ministry and licensed lay ministry are different and distinct callings. 

10:42:47 From William Hazelton : In favour of modular bur should be core basics on fundamentals. Anyway, why distinction between lay and ordained?!
10:42:56 From Kay Short : Do we have local reader groups for continued learning and encouragement post licensing? I miss the theological discussions we had when training!
10:43:04 From Claire Salzmann : Why would modular = dumbing down / lost? It strikes me that there would be no need to water down the content just because it is being delivered in a different manner.
10:43:29 From Lydia Remick : I agree Claire, I don’t see the link between modular and dumbing down…
10:44:21 From Robin West : I do not think we were suggest it would dumb down, but fear that it must be keep in check that it does not.
10:45:17 From Kay Short : With modular would there be a core set of modules that everyone did need to do, then a choice of modules so you could play to your own particular calling? But how might you discover God is calling you to something you haven’t thought of if you don’t experience the wider range of modules?
10:45:25 From Lydia Remick : Some of us started weird and don’t plan to change!
10:49:55 From Kay Short : Could there be an option to do additional modules after licensing?
10:50:36 From Jane Kneebone : Foundations in Christian Ministry fulfils some but not all of these functions.
10:51:37 From Jane Darlington : the Readers in my group and those speaking seem to have been Readers for twenty years….. so trained in 30’s why are we not appealing to this age range to train now? Because we have none in our congregation’s week by week only once a month or festivals, nor at Lent Groups. We need to grow disciples in our church. I find I am approached more in my day to day life or when sitting on the train because of comments to my badge.
10:52:00 From Kathryn : For myself I see my calling as being to my Parish & although I am happy to do stuff in the rest of the benefice I would not want to be licenced to the Deanery and even worse to the Diocese
10:52:45 From Kathryn : Sorry I don’t know why my post said ‘me instead of ‘Kathryn’
10:52:53 From Andrew Hicks : could not to whom you are licensed be a choice?

10:53:14 From Jim : does the age of those coming forward to reader training reflect the ages of people in our congregations? If you don’t have the younger people in worship how can you foster their vocations?
10:53:18 From Lydia Remick : As I tell my LWLs being licensed to benefice doesn’t mean they HAVE to work across the benefice but it means they CAN. Same could the same for deanery or diocese. Doesn’t we have to work across the area but we could if needed.
10:54:14 From Kathryn : We can minister anywhere now if invited by the parish priest, Kathryn
10:54:20 From Deborah Crocker : Your point is very true Jane, at 63 I am one of the youngest people in our benefice – before training younger readers we need to find ways to bring younger people back into church or there will be no one to train.
10:54:24 From Martin Smith : it would be ones own choice as to where you practise,
10:54:25 From Anthony W : When someone feels called to ministry, is there an inherent focus (which may be implicit) towards ordination? Is Reader ministry given the same ‘weight?’ There appears to be a lot of younger vicars but not Readers/LLMs

10:54:58 From Sheri Sturgess : Thank you Imogen
10:55:29 From Lydia Remick : There is also something about needing younger people up front to encourage younger people through the door in the first place… It’s all self perpetuating.
10:55:29 From Caroline-Iain : thank you Imogen – so much to think about

11:09:01 From Don McQuillen-wright : Although I have generally been very fortunate with the clerics with whom I worked I have of many instances where Readers feel very unused. Committees fill me with dread but teamwork is in my view an essential element of parish operation. Incumbents will on occasion meet up with Church wardens and sundries others but no the Readers. Somehow any training should ideally include building relationships with clerics from the very start.
11:12:00 From Andrew Hicks : training alongside clergy was a huge benefit to me 

MESSAGES FOR CARRIE

11:20:01 From Claire Salzmann : A huge thank you to Carrie for all your support and hard work behind the scenes, we wish you every blessing on your Road Ahead.
11:20:27 From Sheri Sturgess : Hear hear
11:20:56 From Paul Arthur : Thank you so much for your massive support and keeping me ‘on task’. Blessings, Paul
11:21:00 From Andrew Hicks : great communication, support, and friendship
11:21:03 From Lydia Remick : Care and concern for us as people. Being there to listen when it was tough in parish and the advice she gave me.
11:21:15 From David Watters : Thank Carrie for your wisdom, kindness, understanding and the love you brought to your role as our Diocesan Secretary!
11:21:16 From Jane Darlington : always smiling
11:21:22 From Robin West : Ever kindness
11:21:30 From martinadams : Thank you, Carrie, for keeping me on my toes when I failed to do things, and for warning me when a deadline was coming up. All done with great personal concern and love. Thank you!
11:21:32 From Kay Short : Thank you for all your help Carrie, in getting my license transferred to Truro and making sure everything was in place.
11:21:37 From Jane Kneebone : Carrie, you’ve been an invaluable support to me over several years. I have valued your support, love, efficiency, early prompting to get jobs done and attention to detail.
11:21:44 From Kathryn : Thanks for always asking my questions and reassuring me I am not an idiot for having to ask them, I will miss you! love from Kathryn
11:21:45 From Martin Smith : thank you Carrie for your love and support. may the grace of our Lord go with you.
11:21:50 From Sheri Sturgess : Your efficient administration and organisation. Your friendliness.
11:21:50 From Tony Le Fevre : Thank you so much for keeping us all together so very well
11:21:55 From Claire : Constant support and encouragement. Thank you Carrie. Every blessing for your future.
11:21:55 From Alan Coode : Thank you for carrying the torch for so long!
11:21:56 From Margaret Sylvester-Thorne : Thank you, Carrie.
11:22:01 From Susan Irving : Thank you for being a true shepherd to us all and me in particular
11:22:02 From Mrs Claridge : we trained together and you got me through thank you. Good luck for the future and the new adventure that you will be starting.
11:22:12 From Jim : https://youtu.be/uXxXWKeEfhA interview with Carrie
11:22:16 From Don McQuillen-wright : Always there
11:22:17 From Matt Frost : always helpful and kind. God Bless you richly on the road ahead
11:22:17 From Debbie Mitchell : Thank you for holding us and this space with such gentleness
11:22:28 From Sandy Massie : Thank you Carrie for the extraordinary way that you organised our Reader Licensing in the Cathedral in the midst of Covid restrictions. You did it with such kindness, thoughtfulness and skill.
11:22:29 From Tim and Zinnia Symonds : For all your hard work and efficiency I am most grateful.
11:22:31 From Penny : Thank you for all you have done, blessings
11:22:36 From David Fieldsend : Thank you, Carrie for your support in times when I needed it.
11:22:40 From Eileen : Thank you for all your help and for welcoming me to the Diocese in 2018.
11:23:00 From Richard Laugharne : Always patient when I forget to reply to emails! Thank you Carrie
11:23:41 From Michael : Thank you for everything you have done for Reader ministry in Cornwall. Love & prayers for the future.
11:23:57 From David : Quiet care, consistency and patience. Thank you. May God bless you.
11:23:58 From Wendy Earl : God bless you Carrie in your future ministry. You have been an absolute star in organising events and keeping tabs on us all for so long. VERY many thanks, Wendy xx
11:24:02 From Sue Wilcox : Thank you Carrie for your understanding and kindness when there were difficult times. x
11:24:13 From Esther Brown : Thank you for your support
11:24:21 From Rebecca Greenough : Thank you for steering me in the right direction. Becca x
11:24:46 From Peter Simmons : Thanks for all your care and encouragement will miss you lots.
11:25:13 From Claire Salzmann : Although you are crossing the border, please remember it will still be jam first! Cx
11:25:46 From Mike Waring : Transferring to Truro Diocese was so easy with your help and guidance. Thank you and every blessing for your future ministry.
11:25:54 From Helen Purchase : Thank Carrie for always being there, so patient and such a fount of

knowledge. I have always known that you would sort things out. Every good wish for you future.
Helen x x x

11:32:38 From Kathryn : Robin, you will enjoy it, I did when I did it and only stepped down because of health issues, Kathryn

11:49:21 From Andrew Hicks : Reader calling, at least mine, is changing. thanks for this encouragement!
11:51:38 From Wendy Earl : The world is changing with so many challenges. Where is the prophetic voice?
11:57:48 From Kathryn : What Bishop Hugh said reminded me of an old Hymn – “How good is the God we adore, our faithful unchangeable friend; His love is as great as his power and knows neither measure nor end. Tis Jesus the first and the last whose spirit will guide us safe home; we’ll praise him for all that has passed and trust him for all that’s to come.” Kathryn
11:58:45 From martinadams : Thank you, Kathryn.
11:59:52 From Andrew Hicks : …with Christ at the centre…
12:03:56 From Kathryn : I love the concept of being On The Way; In the Hausa Language a Christian is a ‘Maibi’ which translates into English as someone who is ‘On The Way’. Kathryn
12:38:33 From Jane Kneebone : Hear hear!
12:41:34 From Wendy Earl : A big thank you David! Some very encouraging reommendations.
12:42:10 From Kathryn : I agree
12:44:33 From Robin West : My group basically wanted to say – A Reader is a Preacher and Teacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ
12:45:15 From Kay Short : A lay minister helping others to be who God calls them to be
12:55:19 From Tony Le Fevre to Jim(Direct Message) : no audio!
12:55:26 From Hugh Nelson : You might have to sing for us David!


13:02:00 From Andrew Hicks : Thank you all
13:02:20 From Mrs Claridge : Thank you to everyone as always it has been good to meet together even if it is over zoom.
13:02:42 From Jane Darlington : Thank you all x
13:02:44 From Kay Short : Thank you everyone – good to ‘meet’ you
13:03:01 From Anthony W : Thank you
13:03:07 From Martin Smith : thank you everyone. lovely to see you all .until next year. deo gracia