Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Made it

Well at least to the end of the first half term. Tomorrow sees the start of half term- starting at 4pm and ending at 4pm on Monday so just Friday and Monday off lectures.
I had a meeting with my Personal Tutor yesterday who is lovely and very encouraging. She told how me how well she thought I'd settled in to college life- which I do think I have managed but I can't say I've found it hard. Perhaps because I had left my 'home church' behind 2 years ago and the churches I worshipped at in Devon never had that feel, and perhaps because this is all I've wanted for so long I've found myself rejoicing in every aspect of college life. That's not to say my husband has found adapting easy and that does make it harder for me.There is the constant guilt that I've done this to him. However we married knowing this was where we were heading and he has been incredibly supportive throughout. I can only pray that during these 2 years he will find his own place and further his own sense of vocation to all God has for him.
Off on Friday to visit my son on the south coast and then up to the Midlands on Saturday to visit K's family. It will be good to see family again and feel part of the normal world.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

New experiences

Life at college is of course full of new experiences but this week has been especially so. In college we are placed in one of five groups and each group takes it in turn to take responsibility for one aspect of community life. This week my group has been on Worship and so we have divided the responsibilities for the services between us. I have led Morning prayer, read at Evening prayer, carried the offertory at the Monday Eucharist and am down to lead compline tomorrow evening. Then today Assistant 2 at the Eucharist had to step down due to illness and so I offered to replace her. I found it a wonderful, moving, exhilarating thought provoking, privilege and I'm so grateful to God for the opportunity. It is a wonderful opportunity to begin to learn the tasks involved for the deacon at the Eucharist and so prepare for future ministry. It is one more activity that has sealed how right all this feels. I just love every opportunity to serve God in helping his people to worship Him.
Tomorrow is my hospital placement which I started last week. Again its a great time to learn what ministry is really about. This Sunday I shall visit my Sunday placement church for the first time and meet the Vicar- one more step along the road I go!
God is so faithful and good.

Sunday, 17 October 2010


Having lived in Scotland, Derbyshire and Devon you would think I would be used to the wonders of God's creation and spectacular scenery. Moving here to Cuddesdon I've been overwhelmed again by the beauty of what God has created. Those who have read my early blogs may remember the heartache of deciding about the flat offered by the college. Well one of the joys having accepted it is that we have the most spectacular views, enhanced most evenings by glorious sunsets. We live on the 4th floor and so look down on many birds, and have red kites soaring past the window. We see cows in the fields and frost on the grass. Then today we went for a walk along the lanes to the next village a return journey of about 4 miles. We were blessed again with sight of the kite, and pheasant, rooks, a heron and in one clump of trees many chaffinch, blue tits and other small birds. I find my self constantly returning to a favourite hymn- How great though art and singing it with tears in my eyes as I think on how wonderful our God is and how magnificent is His creation.
I'm also loving living as part of a larger community of god's people but this week realised one of the downsides- once a cold enters the doors it spreads like wild fire. I went down with it on Thursday- struggled through the day in order to attend my first placement lecture and then succumbed on Friday and took to my bed for the day. By today the worst is over and I hope to be fully fit by 7.30am when I have the privilege of leading Morning Prayer.
More about placements some time soon.

Thursday, 7 October 2010


One of the lovely things about being at Theological college is the worship- 3-4 times a day every day but Saturday. The worship is of many different forms- so today I will have been to Morning prayer, a said Eucharist, evening prayer and compline. Each has a different flavour and touches my spirit in different ways but to each I bring a whole hearted love of God and a desire to please Him. Yesterday we had the weekly college sung Eucharist. I have loved all the services but something about yesterdays service touched me, moved me and fed me as non of the others had. I'm not sure if it was the choice of music which was played by a music group rather than on an organ (wonderful as our organist is) or whether it was the sermon which challenged as no other had since I started here.
Worship of course is a very personal thing and we each bring to a service something of our past, our likes and dislikes but I know I wasn't the only one who came out saying how moved we were by the service. I look forward to many more such moments.
Today our lectures were an Introduction to worship followed by Spirituality both of which informed my reflection on yesterdays experience.
Off this weekend for a quick trip north to Haworth so K can attend an AGM. It will be good to have some time together away from the college and back into the world.

Friday, 1 October 2010


One of the major themes of being in a Theological college is theological reflections and though major ones will be done with pen and paper in a journal i shall also probably find myself reflecting here as well.
Our first week is over- a week of induction- getting to know the lecturers and other students. I'm blessed to be one of 4 in my year doing an MA and we have decided already that we will meet once a week for an hour in a support group both for study and for personal support and prayer. It is going to be so wonderful to have their support in this work.
Yesterday was a very interesting day- we visited 3 contrasting parishes and I was very surprised at my reaction. I feel very drawn to rural ministry and so expected to find the picturesque abbey in a beautiful village with all its history the one that apopealked. Instead it was the one which was 50 years old , built on an air base - really a large estate but in the muddle of the countryside rather than attached to an urban area. It had all the hall marks though of a rural parish with its problems and deprivation and the vicar was inspiring as an incarnational figure within the community. i expect i shall be learning more from that parish!
Off to compline now- a lovely way to end the day.