Page 3 - April
P. 3

FROM THE CURATE: SPOT THE DIFFERENCE

                                         On this page you will see two pictures.
                                         The first was taken on 5th July 2014 at
                                         Christchurch Cathedral Oxford on the day of
                                         my ordination to the diaconate. The other
                                         was taken just a couple of weeks ago in the
                                         back garden of the Parsonage.

                                         I wonder if you can perceive any differences
                                         between the two pictures?
I can see great loss We’ve definitely lost. I've lost my hair. I’ve lost
about four stone off my tummy. In training to run a half marathon, Lenny has
also lost weight (not that she needed to). Bethany has lost her teeth and her
baby face and William has lost his adorable toddler ways as he becomes a
‘big boy’.
I can also see great gain The children can now both read. We’ve
gained a huge number of friends and brothers and sisters in Christ. We've
gained a deep experience of parish ministry. On the whole, we have gained
the respect of members of the church as well as the community. I’ve gained
knowledge of what it's like to live and work as a parish priest.
And if we were to play ‘spot the difference’ in the church I think there would
be a perceivable difference in the last three years. For one, there are less
services happening (cutting down from about nine each Sunday, to about
six). Another difference is that we have grown over the last three years;
there are now more people collectively coming to worship on a Sunday.
Whilst we still have a distance to go, I believe that we are more united as a
Parish. We have become more outward focused, considering mission and
how to reach out. Part of this can be seen through the missional activities
we've done like the Queen's 90th birthday, the prayer venue at Feast Day,

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