Monthly blog

From the Vicar_May 2011

Posted by on Wednesday, May 18, 2011 Under: Vicar's Monthly Letters
Dear Friends in the parish and beyond,

I am writing this letter just as my three month Study Leave/Sabbatical comes to an end. Study leave is something clergy in this diocese can apply for every 10 years, and during this time we are free to do different things while still receiving our stipend.

For the last month Kathy and I have been visiting different churches in this country, but for the first two months we went travelling abroad, and you may well ask what that has got to do with study or how it can be of value to me in my ministry. After all, we clergy do have to submit our plans for Study Leave to the diocese for their approval. In reply I would say that our travelling has been a time of refreshing, of seeing wonderful places in the world, of seeing how ordinary people live in other countries, and of meeting interesting people (for instance, a brief chat on the sky train in Kuala Lumpur with an Iranian fashion designer who was telling us what things were like in Iran!) We have also received many, many kindnesses, both from people we know and from many people we just met for a few minutes. It is often said of Christians, and especially of clergy, that we are out of touch with life, and this time has certainly helped me keep in touch with what is going on in the world, as well as being marvellously stimulating.

That said, we are thrilled to be back again and getting back to work here in Aylesford Church. It is wonderful to renew friendships; and, after all, it is in our normal day to day life inside and outside church that we live out our faith and grow as Christians.

So, yes, we have had a marvellous time, but it is wonderful to get home. I hope the church will benefit gradually from all that we have experienced while we have been away.

Best wishes

In : Vicar's Monthly Letters 



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