There will be many who read this letter who won’t have met me – or indeed many of the people who make up the family of Wrecclesham’s special parish church, St Peter’s (the church on the hill that you might walk or drive past more times than you can count!).
I am ‘the new person’ to Wrecclesham – your parish Vicar – and I am truly delighted to be here! I look forward to getting to know local people, groups and places as time unfolds.
If you were to ask me to describe what the 21st century parish church is all about, it would undoubtedly be ‘Love and Community.’
Of course, to love and to take part in community is not a role exclusive to church – and what’s more, as humans, things can go wrong, even in church – but what I know about this church of St Peter’s thus far, is that it is a place where really good people gather and seek to worship (obviously) and to serve the community (not so obvious) day-by-day in everyday lives – and Sunday by Sunday through inclusive and friendly worship.
The vision of St Peter’s is to be at the heart of Wrecclesham, offering a warm welcome, faithful witness and loving service. It is this statement that excited me and drew me to this place because I wanted to be part of a parish church – a church rooted and embedded in the community – that seeks to live out the good news that we are all valued and loved first – even before we are loved by our family and friends and partners – by a God who made us and cares for us and who wants nothing more for us than to be happy and able to live out our daily lives with some semblance of peace and hope – even when things get tricky and tough as they sometimes do.
As you read, Easter is upon us and with it the hope of new beginnings and new adventures that Jesus’s life, death and resurrection promise. My hope is that Wrecclesham’s church and community will grow ever closer together. My prayer is that those yet to visit St Peter’s will do so and discover a space of peace and tranquillity amidst their busy lives, and I trust that all who come will experience that warm welcome and sense of belonging promised in Christ’s name and find for themselves the joy that comes in belonging to a loving community that lives life through faith, fellowship and friendship.
The word ‘Church’ with a capital ‘C’ means the people – and the people of the church tend to live in their local community first and then become part of their church community. So here in Wrecclesham we really are in it together – working to build an even more caring, sharing and loving community – and I look forward to us finding ways to strengthen the peace, joy and fun we can have along the way – together…
Please do pop into St Peter’s sometime – it really is a special space in a special place.
Enjoy this springtime of hope and new beginnings,
|The Church of my dreams: John Milton Moore
This is the Church of my dreams.
The Church of the warm heart,
Of the open mind, of the adventurous spirit.
The Church that cares, that heals hurt lives,
That comforts old people, and that challenges youth,
That knows no divisions of culture or class;
No frontiers, geographical or social.
The Church that enquires as well as asserts,
That looks forward as well as backward,
The Church of the Master, the Church of the people;
High as the ideals of Jesus, low as the humblest human.
A working Church, a worshipping Church,
An enchanting, winsome, charming, captivating Church.
A Church that inspires courage for this life,
And hope for the life to come;
A Church of courage, a Church of all good men and women,
This Church of my dreams is the Church of the Living God.
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