Weekly Update – 26th March

As Jenny mentioned last week a word cloud has been prepared as the outcome from the “What3Words” exercise. This will be put up in church for people to see and reflect on.
The word cloud shows the words that have been offered by people contributing to the exercise. It was a difficult challenge to encapsulate in three words the thoughts on where we are now as a church and three words that describe our direction and future mission. The size of the word on the word cloud depends on the number of people who said it – a large word means it has been suggested by more people.

It seems a very abstract thing to do but these word clouds draw us into a reflection on where we are as a church community, together with our future mission. It provides an opportunity to sense where God is directing us.

We had a PCC meeting this week and time was spent in considering the word clouds. Some good insights came out of the discussion. Many points were made that gave us insights into the future vision which will be used to develop our parish profile. From these insights we can discern the qualities of the new vicar we will be seeking to join us and encourage us on the journey ahead.

We are still on our journey through the season of Lent. The time when Jesus was in the wilderness. Wilderness features in our readings this Sunday. The barren and dry wilderness described in Ezekiel (37.1-14). A desolate place, full of bones and devoid of life. The prophet sees the transforming breath of God bringing life into this wilderness and the promise of restoration of the people of Israel. In the account from John’s Gospel (John 11.1-45), Martha is grieving from the death of her brother Lazarus. Her loss is like a wilderness. But Jesus says to her “I am the resurrection and the life”, revealing the transforming power of faith in Christ. In both readings we are reminded of the promise of life out of death.

There will come a time
When all around us will be gone –
Blown away like dust…
But there will never come a time
When the wind-breath of God ceases to blow,
When the Spirit sleeps, when love lies lifeless.