2021 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Church Warden · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · England · Face Masks · Faith · God · Parish Church · Parish Life · Parishioners · Rural · Vicarage

Irresponsible!

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For some unexplainable reason, I have started going to the earlier service on Sundays.

However, this Sunday past, I unexpectedly attended the later service; very soon after I entered church, I realised that the churchwarden who was at the door was full of the cold; I was horrified. The horror soon turned to anger! I hasten to add that I am not proud of myself! I was just so annoyed that some people can be so irresponsible!!!! Needless to say that this churchwarden was coughing and spluttering throughout the service.

As I wrote previously, most people in the UK have started operating like as if Covid19 has mysteriously disappeared. I wish that is the case but it is far from the truth; Covid19 is still very much with us and continuing to consume lives on a daily basis.

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Estate Churches

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Recently I came across the term estate churches and so decided to ask the Mhinisteir about it. I’ve since learned that estate churches are churches that are within the estate of the landed gentry. These churches would have been funded and built by their forefathers.

Estate Churches are not uncommon in rural places. You may have seen an example of an estate church in period dramas like Downton Abbey.

Wherever there is an estate church, the gentry has some say in the appointment of a new vicar.

Thankfully, we do not have estate churches in any of our umpteen parishes! However, we do have a handful of landed gentry. Most of them behave impeccably but there are one or two who like to throw their weight about; they like to pretend that they are in possession of estate churches!

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Incident

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There was an incident in church one week when we were due to be away. I was disturbed by what had happened that my packing for the trip went completely haywire with me missing out a good number of essentials including my bible! Thankfully, these days you can access the bible online but sadly it is never the same as handling the physical book itself.

I am still shocked by that incident. I wish I could write about it… After witnessing that ugly incident, my first thought after I had composed myself was, is it any wonder that many clergy in the Church of England are signed off work when they have to regularly come face to face with intimidation tactics employed by some parishioners. However, I also wonder if clergy these days especially the younger ones are equipped for the real world. The ones that I know appear to live in lala land!

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Rest in peace?

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In the last 12 months, the Mhinisteir has had at least 3 requests for exhumation. I will not insult your intelligence by explaining what an exhumation is. I was intrigued by these requests. I used to think that you only exhume a body in extreme circumstances like when a crime has been committed.

The Mhinisteir explained that requests such as these are rarely approved. As the Church yard is a sacred place, there should be very little disturbance. This is why we say rest in peace. Furthermore, when a person is buried, It should be their final resting place.

By the way, I have since learnt that at least one of the person requesting an exhumation is the wife of the deceased. The reason given was that the husband’s grave was vandalised but the real reason is because she is moving away!

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Sudden Influx

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For the last fortnight or so, we have have been inundated with people informing us that they are putting their names forward to be elected to represent their respective dioceses in the upcoming General Synod of the CofE to be held in November 2021. It has been really strange because there have been many emails and telephone calls on this matter! The Mhinisteir has of course had people persuading him to vote for them!

I was a little unsure as to why the sudden interest until I realised that last Friday was the closing date for the votes and more importantly there are two very important subjects that will be discussed: Save the Parish and LLF(Living in love and faith). LLF is actually the big elephant in the room; I don’t wish to comment on it because it is an extremely sensitive matter. It is best left to the experts to thrash it out. As for myself, I believe that God is much much bigger than the elephant in the room; I am going to put my trust in Him.

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Education

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I was pleasantly surprised to see in the Church Times that there is a Christian boarding school near Bath.

One day, over our evening meal, the Mhinisteir and I were commenting on how difficult it must be to be a parent in 21st century Britain where children are being taught all kinds of “funky” stuff in school. It must be particularly difficult for parents with strong religious beliefs.

For a split second, the Mhinisteir and I were thankful that we don’t have children so therefore no grandchildren!

In case you are interested in the Christian boarding school. Their details can be found here.

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Young Miss T

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Last week, as I sat in my study listening to the BBC world service on the radio, I found myself listening to excerpts of Young Miss T’s speech that was given in Italy. I am not a fan of young Miss T. I find her to be shouty, rude and blah blah blah! I know I am in the minority for young Miss T has been elevated to godlike status by both politicians and religious leaders.

As a Christian, I do not worship the creation instead I worship the creator and because of that I have a duty to care for all that God has created including the environment. I am not an eco warrior but I make a conscious effort to care for the environment in the way I live my life. I am not a vegetarian but here in the Vicarage we only buy organic or free range meat. We use the services of a milkman who brings our organic milk in a glass bottle. I recycle as much as possible and try to buy refillable packs where possible. We don’t make unnecessary foreign trips. Most importantly, I believe in keeping the Sabbath day holy where everyone and everything gets a rest. I hasten to add that my idea of a Sabbath rest is very different to that of strict Sabbatarians. You can read about it here.

In March 2020, during the first lockdown here in the UK , everything came to a standstill. During that period people reported of sightings of birds and animals that had disappeared years ago! People in the cities also talked about hearing birdsong for the first time ever.

Young Miss T is….. young😁 and therefore probably doesn’t realise that life is very complicated. For some people in the world, where they get their next meal is more important than the environment. The environment is just one of the many many issues that a world leader has to grapple with.

It is good important to raise awareness but obsession is unhealthy.

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Roman Numerals

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I use Morning Exercises by William Jay as part of my daily spiritual exercise. It is a very old book that I pinched from the Mhinisteir’s library as I felt I needed something heavy duty to complement my three chapters of daily Bible reading.

Anyway, because the book is very old, the reference to scripture is in roman numerals! I thought I was good at identifying roman numerals until one day, when I was stumped. The scripture reading for that day was Psalm lv. Assuming the l referred to a hundred, I started looking for the respective verse in Psalm 105! Of course it wasn’t there as lv means 55!!!! Time to brush up on my roman numerals!!!

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And so what do you do?

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This is the question I am asked at EVERY social event. I am so used to being asked this question that I have found the perfect answer which leaves the questioner gobsmacked!

These days, a woman is expected to be in some form of employment to be considered a worthy human being. My mother is a housewife and my two grandmothers were housewives. Like them, I too am a housewife. I used to be one even before I came down with this mystery illness.

I used to work before I got married and I continued to work after I got married. However, just before his ordination which was shortly after getting married, the Mhinisteir expressed his desire for me to give up work so that I could be his helpmate. I was pretty chuffed. I love being a housewife. I get a lot of free time to myself to pursue my own interests. I even have the luxury of an afternoon nap!

Like my mother and my grandmothers, I too have to run a tight ship. I have to work within a small budget. We have a cleaner who comes in weekly and a gardener. Other than that, I deal with everything that is related to the Vicarage from the ironing to the cooking which I do from scratch to the letter writing giving the Mhinisteir the time and energy to concentrate on his calling. Recently, I told someone that I am not an “evangelical” vicar’s wife who is very hands on when it comes to her husband’s calling. Nothing wrong with that but I prefer to work in the background. This is how I support the Mhinisteir.

To come back to the question…. and so what do you do? I am a lady of leisure!!!!

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Alternative Creed

We in the Church of England say the Apostles Creed Sunday by Sunday. Recently, I came across an alternative creed by the English journalist and poet Steve Turner which I found to be very thought provoking so here it is…

We believe in Marxfreudanddarwin

We believe everything is OK

as long as you don’t hurt anyone

to the best of your definition of hurt,

and to the best of your knowledge.

We believe in sex before, during, and

after marriage.

We believe in the therapy of sin.

We believe that adultery is fun.

We believe that sodomy’s OK.

We believe that taboos are taboo.

We believe that everything’s getting better

despite evidence to the contrary.

The evidence must be investigated

And you can prove anything with evidence.

We believe there’s something in horoscopes

UFO’s and bent spoons.

Jesus was a good man just like Buddha,

Mohammed, and ourselves.

He was a good moral teacher though we think

His good morals were bad.

We believe that all religions are basically the same-

at least the one that we read was.

They all believe in love and goodness.

They only differ on matters of creation,

sin, heaven, hell, God, and salvation.

We believe that after death comes the Nothing

Because when you ask the dead what happens

they say nothing.

If death is not the end, if the dead have lied, then its

compulsory heaven for all

excepting perhaps

Hitler, Stalin, and Genghis Kahn

We believe in Masters and Johnson

What’s selected is average.

What’s average is normal.

What’s normal is good.

We believe in total disarmament.

We believe there are direct links between warfare and

bloodshed.

Americans should beat their guns into tractors .

And the Russians would be sure to follow.

We believe that man is essentially good.

It’s only his behavior that lets him down.

This is the fault of society.

Society is the fault of conditions.

Conditions are the fault of society.

We believe that each man must find the truth that

is right for him.

Reality will adapt accordingly.

The universe will readjust.

History will alter.

We believe that there is no absolute truth

excepting the truth

that there is no absolute truth.

We believe in the rejection of creeds,

And the flowering of individual thought.

If chance be

the Father of all flesh,

disaster is his rainbow in the sky

and when you hear

State of Emergency!

Sniper Kills Ten!

Troops on Rampage!

Whites go Looting!

Bomb Blasts School!

It is but the sound of man

worshipping his maker.