Monday, 24 January 2011


We have just enjoyed a lovely weekend. Saturday after a lazy start to the day we drove over to Cirencester partly as somewhere new to explore partly because I knew it had a Christian bookshop where I could buy some cards. We had a baptism yesterday of one of the children from the college community and I wanted a card which said baptism not christening on it. All the ones in local shops had the latter. The bookshop in Cirencester had a lovely selection of cards so I stocked up for a variety of purposes. We had a lovely cup of coffee and cake there with free top up and a long chat with the lady serving who turned out to be the vicars wife. the vicar had trained at Cuddesdon so we had a lot to chat about. If you are in or around Cirencester do visit the Cornerstone Book shop and cafe it was lovely. We also enjoyed wandering around the parish church and the town. Great relaxation and break from essays!
the n yesterday afternoon was the baptism of baby N. A wonderful time. the church was packed and our sacristan rather busy so I helped out with welcoming people and handing out books. I do love that job its such and opportunity to serve God and the community by making others feel welcomed.
This morning I had the joy of serving at Communion. It was a revelation how natural that is beginning to feel even at 8am. This time I seemed to manage to say the right words and to hand everything over to the priest at the right time.
later in the week i shall be leading Evening prayer which will be a first here so I'm looking forward to serving then as well.
Life is good. God is wonderful and I am really at peace again.

Friday, 21 January 2011

Better today

After my last post which was very negative I am feeling much better today. Thanks to my friends who prayed, to my lovely husband who hugged me, prayed for me and listened, and to God who has been my strength and my salvation. C is certain he wants to stay with his dad to stay at his present school and I have sent him money for his bus pass. I'm over the worst of the tiredness and am sure after the weekend I will be fully recovered. Yesterday we were back on our midweek placement which in my case it is at the hospital. We had a very good teaching session yesterday on work in a hospice. I'm also now talking to a tutor about summer placement which is very exciting.
Now its time to return to my essay on liturgy with the hope I can get it finished and handed in.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011


Having travelled back from up north yesterday from the funeral I'm shattered today and that may be the reason I'm feeling so low! The funeral went well and I was told that my eulogy touched people. I came away feeling very affirmed and encouraged in this path I am on.
however today I have had news from my youngest son which makes me question the effect of what I'm doing on my family. C moved to live with his dad along with one of his brothers when I started talking about looking for a college tot rain at. that worked out well in the first few years but now their dad has left his second wife and complications concern me about the way he is living his life and the effect on my children. however readers may remember that our flat at college is very small and movign C now would also involve him moving school so he's not keen- his freinds are obviously where he is living. that has all left me confuced concerned and praying like mad for clarity of thought and wisdom.
In amongst all that I am of course back in lectures and Oxford lectures this morning were not what I had hoped for.
Hence I am down and hoping that I'll sleep well tonight and feel better tomorrow.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Death dying and bereavement

This has been the theme of the week for me. as Oxford Uni is not back yet we have had a themed study week and my choice was death dying and bereavement. Its a compulsory element which we can choose to do either now or later in the year, I elected to do it now not knowing my uncle would die at New Year and I would be giving the tribute at his funeral.
The week has been very instructive. The first couple of days covered grief and how people handle it while the later sessions dealt with theology of death, the funeral visit , liturgy etc. Then today we went to visit the crematorium. I was very interested int he crem. but did absent myself from at the point when an actual coffin was going to be put into the cremators- it was just a bit too near to home for Mondays funeral.
trying to get ready for the funeral has been rather frustrating- my aunt had no idea what she wanted at the funeral other than wanting me to give the tribute. So I tried to get hold of the chaplain of the Deep Sea Mission who is taking the funeral. I eventually managed to get him today but he was vague about the service except that he would thread the biographical details of my uncle into the service. It was back to the drawing board for my tribute. However its written now and I'm hoping it will be alright. Its certainly given me food for thought for future ministry and dealing with relatives.
Oh well time to go and pack ready for tomorrows visit north.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Back again

It's been a while since I posted,I wanted to be able to say that my essays were both finished and handed in! However although one was completed and handed in the other is still a 1000 to be done. However the tutor is not back until next Monday so I will get it done.
Christmas was a lovely time- we had nearly a foot of snow the weekend before and then freezing weather so long tramps in the snow were the order of the day. Went to my placement church for Christmas Eve crib service and Christmas morning where I led the intercessions. For midnight mass we went to the village church which has close links with the college. They were short of a sidesperson so I stepped in to give out the books and then was invited to administer the Chalice as well. It was such a privilege to be able to serve in those ways.
The week between Christmas and New year I took my youngest son up to lancashire to visit my mum. We had a great time together and then on the way home I dropped him at friends in Derbyshire and went to spend an hour with my eldest son. It was so good to catch up with them both. Back home I had a phone call from my mum on New Years eve to tell me that my uncle, her younger brother had died.
Now we are back in college and its a themed study week on death dying and bereavement. Out of a group of 17 , 5 had uncles die over Christmas! I've been asked to give the eulogy at the funeral next Monday so hope to get some advice this week.
Being back in college is strange. Sitting in chapel at 7.30 this morning it was as if the past month dissolved. Then going into the common room for coffee later in the day it was so good to be back part of the community and to know everyone. Catching up with others and feeling the deepening friendships was wonderful.
So now I must finish my essay, write a eulogy and prepare to travel 150 miles north at the weekend.