As we enter the New Year (yet another one I hear you say) and we dust off our resolutions and gather up our resolve to do better things, lose more weight, get fitter, be kinder, more thoughtful, more holy, work harder, I would like to suggest you do all of that in a meditative, thoughtful – dare I say prayerful – way. As the year opens up before us, I want to offer an opportunity for us all, whether regular church members or not, to ponder the message of the season just past. The coming of a child into the world with a message of peace joy and hope. A child who grew to be a man with a unique position in the history of the world. Jesus desires that we have life in all its fullness (John 10.10) and wants us to be in relationship with him and with others in such a way that we change the world about us. He promised to help us by sending the Holy Spirit to prompt, to guide, to uphold, to enable and equip us to do that. However we understand that, take time to draw deep into yourself for inspiration for the coming year. Then, later in the year please join in with a wider exercise to explore what the Holy Spirit might be saying to us as a church, a village, a community, and a gathering of communities and parishes which make up our diocese of Rochester. The diocese will be providing some material under the banner “Our conversation – our future” for us to study during Lent (6th March – 8th April), a time when we traditionally gather to learn together. We will be meeting in groups which will be hosted across the benefice to explore this, beginning with the question “what is the Holy Spirit saying to us?” and my hope is that we will gain insights and understanding of how we can better serve each other and God. Opportunities to sign up will be in churches soon. If you would like to join in the process of discovery but are not a regular churchgoer, please let me know and I’ll make it happen. Happy New Year – I hope and pray it is all you need it to be.

Many blessings,
Peter Callway