Rev'd Karen - February 2022

The Vicar’s Light Reflections

Light Reflections… “Let your light shine…” (Matthew 5.16)

As I write this in mid-January, the signs of Spring are well and truly on their way. The tiny, closed buds are clearly evident on the bare tree branches, the shoots of green are popping up in the Vicarage garden, I wait in anticipation to see what they will be; the bird song is heard again. This joy of renewal and new life is beautifully put in the Song of Solomon, “…for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth; the time for singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.” (Song of Solomon 2: 11-12)

And new life and growth is all around us in our Benefice, there is much to be thankful for and much to praise God for His blessings and provision.

A year ago, I was preparing for my interview to this position of Vicar of Balderstone, Mellor and Samlesbury, and I thank God a time of interregnum came to an end when I was licensed in June last year. We are now looking forward to the Licensing of an Assistant Priest who will bring many gifts and skills in ministry and mission as we work together as a Benefice to grow God’s Kingdom here on earth, and as we partner with Him in His Mission of what He already is doing in our communities.

We celebrate growth in the work of our two wonderful Church Administrators who have already, in such a short time, brought order out of the chaos of admin and increased our Social Media presence a hundred fold.

We are being blessed by the numbers of people coming to our services, whether new or returning, especially after the very difficult 2 years of the pandemic. I give thanks that during the times of Lockdowns that Zoom Services of the Benefice helped to bring our 3 parishes together and helped to build relationships which we now stand on as our foundation stone as a United Benefice.

Already the calendar is fast becoming full of weddings and baptisms as couples and families seek to make their vows and declarations before God in these two wonderful sacraments as we welcome them to be a part of our church families.

And we look forward this year for what God has planned for us, such as our Stewardship Campaign which we will kick-start during Lent as we look at Generosity, Gift and Grace; and a deepening of our prayer life, grounded in the scriptures; through Bible study and fellowship. I have a real sense that God is saying to us: “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:19)

So let us pray for springs of His life-giving water to well up in our lives and our communities.

Rev’d Karen Christ Centered…Kingdom Focused