Bishop’s Banter 01/06/2018

So it’s me again until next week when Peter our parish assistant will be back at the computer. Unfortunately even as I write he is still on a plane somewhere. His journey back has been pretty awful with flights delayed and connections lost. In the end he will have been travelling for as long as he spent in the UK or near enough. It will be good to see him when he returns late tonight. (Friday) A nice touch though after all the dramas and exhaustion – by surprise he was upgraded to business class for his flight from Heathrow….flat bed, silver service….

who could resent a little luxury for the pastoral assistant?

I heard news of the upgrade just after reading a post on facebook from an American tele evangelist justifying his appeal to his flock for money to purchase a private jet. This was to preserve him from a ‘long tube filled with devils…’ Mm. I want to assure you all that although I’ve hankered to have my own TV show (for the Lord!)  not one penny of the money you give to Christ Church goes towards such luxuries…

It was very good to have our Archdeacon Len Firth with us last Sunday. I found the bit in his sermon about imagining what our worship would be like if it were not founded in the doctrine of the Trinity very arresting, as well as his little phrase about our purpose…‘We gather in order that we might scatter...’ He related our tradition of calling the Eucharist ‘mass’ to that word’s origins from the dismissal at the end of the service in Latin: ‘ Ite, missa est’ which means “Go; the dismissal is made”.

In other words, the very word we use to describe the service reminds us that we come in order to go!

I hope you’ve had a good week. It was good to attend our regional clergy conference on Tuesday. I met folk I’d not met before including our next door parish priest at Merri Creek Anglican in North Fitzroy. We are meeting for coffee this week. But the highlight was two remarkable bible studies led by Ferderica Villanueva form Manila. His presentation revealed him to be that lovely combination of both teacher and pastor. The studies were on two of the psalms of lament, 57 and 130.  His book on theme is called ‘It’s OK to be Not OK’…..His title reflects another important truth alongside the Archdeacon’s wisdom : it’s alright not to be jolly! We can be open with God in the times of sadness and brokenness and disappointment that come in life.

I asked your prayers last week for a meeting with the Property Committee of the diocese to discuss our proposals and the financial challenges we face meeting them, and how our overall property assets might assist. We now wait for their response. But you might like to see the two little postcards I gave them to illustrate our hopes – one was found in a cafe in the city and the other expressing our vision for the same site…

note the cheeky dinosaur on the left….

Keep on praying. There are mountains to climb.

On Sunday we shall be giving particular thanks for the gift of Holy Communion. It’s the day in the Christian Year called ‘Corpus Christi’ from the Latin for ‘Body of Christ’. I hope to see you there.

Love in Christ,


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