|Reverend Carolyn Oley and the leadership team
Reverend Carolyn writes..
I begin my letter to you this month, hazy sunshine is breaking through a grey, cloudy sky. How we long for brightness at this
time of year. Our churches met together on Ash Wednesday this week to prepare for Lent, a time when we try to be more aware
of ourselves and to change the things that we know let us down.
One of the things
that I think is most difficult, is to accept those people who in looks or ways are most unlike ourselves. We can see this
in the newspapers from the Chelsea fans who pushed someone off a train because of the colour of his skin, to those who persist
in this country and throughout Europe in stigmatising those born as Jews. In our personal lives there are all sorts of things
that we find difficult to accept as well. Sometimes outward things like dress or ways of acting or speaking that we can find
irritating. And of course we only ever see the outside of each other. The innermost secrets of our hearts are usually shared
if ever, with those who are closest to us. Quite often when I take funerals, even family members have little or no information
about those they have known all of their lives.
But just like the sun breaking
through in winter, so we are warmed by those who spread love and acceptance among us. I know several who are a constant inspiration
to me - those who welcome others as friends with affectionate concern. Young and old we all like to be with those people and
we all feel better for their company. Perhaps we can encourage one another to spread that warmth, and give some lighthearted
pleasure as we brace ourselves against the winter winds of March.
love and prayers,
Filling the Christ shaped hole in the heart of
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