We are in the midst of a transitional time in terms of the seasons: Winter is transitioning into Spring with all its equinoctial storms, gales, and general unsettled weather. We say: “Winter one day; Spring the next.” It has little to do with climate change (amazing how all weather seems to be blamed on that these days!) but is part of well-established weather patterns. If you don’t believe me just look around you at what is happening in nature: the forsythias and crocuses are in flower; the trees and shrubs are budding; even the birds are singing. Nature has its way! It is not surprising that our church year is built in part around what is happening in nature. In the deep mid-winter we celebrated the 3 seasons of light: Christmas; Epiphany and Candlemas. The current season of Lent with its more sober spirit reflecting the rather dreary weather leads into all the riotous joyfulness of Easter and Spring. These particular transitions are familiar to us.
However, there are many transitions taking place in our lives that we don’t always recognize or name as such but which involve the uncertainty and challenge of change. I am particular conscious of our parish facing the transition into new ministerial leadership. I am conscious also of the implications for that with regard to my own ministry. After all, once the new Rector is in place I will be moving on. At this stage I don’t have any idea what I will be doing next. I wouldn’t mind some time off for a while to enjoy my retirement. But I also know that for my spiritual and psychological well-being, I need something to occupy me that is creative and challenging. I have been much blessed being at Holy Apostles and I am hugely grateful for the experience. But I also know that in moving on, I shall discover new opportunities for service and ministry.
My prayer is that the parish will embrace whoever is chosen to lead Holy Apostles and that together the parish will grow and develop. Transitions in personal and institutional life always involve change. Holy Apostles is no exception to that fact. Change never comes easily; we tend to instinctively to react against changes in our lives. But, I suspect most of us have embraced the changes in our lives that are inevitable more than we realize. Just think of the changes you have witnessed and survived in your relationships, in your work, in the daily round, in your church, let alone in your own faith and beliefs. At the root of all the challenges we deal with as a result of the changes we face is our understanding of God’s Spirit at work in us and around us, both in the settled aspects of our lives as well as in the changes we face.
May we know and rejoice in God’s Spirit at work for good in our own lives and in the life of our community of faith here at Holy Apostles.