TO KNOW GOD AND TO MAKE GOD KNOWN
TO KNOW GOD AND TO MAKE GOD KNOWN
Today – officially the first day of Autumn - I awoke to a beautiful sunny crisp morning which lifted my spirits, despite the seemingly endless Covid-19 restrictions. It was a bright “joy to be alive” morning with sunlight reflecting through the trees behind us on Frodsham hill – reminding me of God’s amazing creativity.
However, as I was eating my breakfast, I watched a mist descend - creeping down the hill, winding its way silently and softly through the branches of the trees and eventually blotting out the sun. Yet by the time I was walking round to school to lead worship, the sun was breaking through once more and the colours of nature were illuminated by God’s natural spotlight.
It struck me how this contrast is frequently reflected in our journey of faith and life. One minute we’re on top of the world and the next we’re lost in the fog. Wherever you feel at the moment, it’s worth remembering that Jesus walks with us through the bleakest “foggy” times as well as the glorious sunshine.
This week’s reading from Philippians reminds us that Jesus humbled himself to walk among us – yet he remains the one to whom every knee will bend as he reveals to us the kingdom of heaven in the world around us – if we choose to see.
This week’s poem to share with you is “Follow, follow” by Stuart Barrie:
Never once did he say,
“Worship me I am the one.”
Adoration was not sought
Or ever needed by the Son.
All he wanted was the heart
No chant or hollow plea.
The gift he asked?...
“Release your grasp. Relax, and follow me.”
Whatever the weather or the news brings, may you find “sunshine” in the coming days and weeks.
With love and blessings,
I am married to Phil, a retired Priest, who now enjoys his role as “The Vicar’s husband!” I am very grateful for his love and support, and will set him to work now and again once he has received the Bishop’s Permission to Officiate (PTO).
I have two grown up daughters, both of whom currently live on the Wirral:
Rebecca is a doctor currently working at The Countess of Chester Hospital. She is in the final years of her Paediatrics training and has a particular interest in neo-natal babies. She is married to Chris and they have three children – Benjamin, almost 5, Alexander 3, and Jemima who is 16 months. We have been very much part of their “childcare” and I’m sure they will be frequent visitors to Frodsham! Since I am a native Welsh speaker, they refer to us as Nain and Taid.
Helen is a Fine Arts graduate who spent time after university exploring Australia, New Zealand, and many other countries in the Far East. Consequently, she now works for Trailfinders in Liverpool arranging holidays for other people – who knows when that might happen again? Last July, she married Mike - who until this weekend was a trainee Paramedic, due to qualify in July – this week he becomes a full-time NHS paramedic.
I was born and brought up in Old Colwyn on the North Wales coast. I was a pupil at Colwyn High School (now Eirias), and enjoyed participating in the Urdd Eisteddfods – reciting, singing and clog/folk dancing. I have always enjoyed Drama, Theatre and Literature. I completed a joint honours degree in English and Drama at Padgate, and went on to teach both subjects in various schools in the North West, before moving to Cambridgeshire to take up a post as Head of Drama.
We returned to Wales in 1999 when Phil was appointed Vicar of Mostyn and Ffynnongroyw, and then in 2003 he became Vicar of Old Colwyn.
During this time I worked as a freelance Drama Practitioner, which included delivering the GCSE/A level Drama curriculum at Prestatyn High School, working as a Drama Examiner/Team Leader for Edexcel, leading many varied Drama based workshops for all ages, Inset for teachers, producing and directing shows/plays. I loved every aspect of this. We still visit the Theatre as often as we can.
I enjoyed the role of “vicar’s wife” (still do!!!) but eventually became aware that God was calling me into ordained ministry in my own right, and I was delighted to be accepted for Ordination training in July 2009.
It was on the one hand a tough decision to give up my teaching career – I have very fond memories; but on the other hand it was easy because the overwhelming “rightness” of it all meant that my time in teaching was a stepping stone – part of my journey to where God needs me to be now. Being a priest carries a great responsibility and is very humbling as well as being a huge privilege to be serving God in this way.
My first post was in St. Asaph as the Dean’s curate which I enjoyed, especially being Chaplain to the cathedral choirs. It was such a joy and a privilege to be immersed in such wonderful church music, and to be part of rich and dignified services of praise and thanks to our God.
I went on to become Rector of Bala and Mission Area leader for a large area in the heart of Wales, before moving to Tilstock (Shropshire) as part of the Ministry team in Fauls, Whitchurch and Tilstock.
I am delighted to have been appointed as your Vicar, and I am very much looking forward to working with you all as by the grace of God we write the next chapter in the life of St Laurence’s together.