2017 May

May 2017

Dear Friends,

As I write, it is Easter weekend. We have watched and waited through Maundy Thursday and Good Friday and look forward to proclaiming that Christ is risen.

As you read this, that may be a distant memory, perhaps as distant as the remains of your chocolate Easter eggs. This year, we need to wait until June for Pentecost. Therefore in May, we are in that in-between time between the two.

It is tempting to skip from one to the other and ignore what is happening in-between. Yet the period between Easter and Pentecost, Jesus revealed himself to his disciples. Paul tells us that over five hundred people saw him at one time. It was during this time that his followers found that death had been defeated, that Jesus was more than just a good teacher, and that he was their Lord and their God. It was during this time that Peter was three times forgiven and recommissioned following his three times denial of Christ. It was during this time that they were given the great commission to go to the ends of the earth with the gospel.

The in-between time is important.

We, as a circuit, are approaching an in-between time. During August, our superintendent, Terry Keen will be moving to Halifax. The Circuit Meeting has decided not to replace Terry immediately., All being well we will enter the stationing process in 2018 in order for a Superintendent to be appointed to begin in the circuit on 1st September 2019. The reason for this is that we have work to do in discovering what kind of circuit we will be in order to request a superintendent with appropriate gifts and graces to lead us.

In the in-between time, Liverpool District intends to appoint a Mission and Ministry Team for the circuit. The team will comprise our District Chair, Rev. Dr. Sheryl Anderson as our titular Superintendent, working with Rev. Rachel Deigh, the District Mission and Evangelism Enabler and with myself.

In addition to this, we intend to employ on a part-time basis a Circuit administrator and a Circuit mission enabler.  We will be also seeking to appoint an active supernumerary minister who will focus on pastoral care.

We hope that in the in-between time, this team will work with the members of the circuit helping us to engage with our local communities in mission, inspire us in discipleship and provide appropriate pastoral care. We will also be looking at how the circuit can best be organised to be in a position to request a superintendent minister.

As the disciples hid behind locked doors following Jesus’ crucifixion, they could have had no idea what faced them after Pentecost. With the power of the Holy Spirit, they went out to evangelise the world.

Similarly, as we start on this process, we may be uncertain of the way ahead, but we know that, like the disciples, we will be led by the Holy Spirit as we seek to move forward.

As I write, we are in the process of seeking approval from the District, with the aim of advertising for the roles, with interviews in time to appoint the new team for the beginning of September.

Just as the disciples discovered the power of the resurrection during the in-between time, we will be able to use the space afforded to us over the next two years to prepare for a future that could be as exciting as that discovered by the disciples on the Day of Pentecost.

 

David


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