Vicars Letter May 2019
Margaret our curate
Dear Friends ,
You will read an article about Margaret Haywood. Margaret is to serve her curacy in Burnham on Sea following her ordination in Wells Cathedral at the end of June. Margaret will continue to live in her own home in Weston super Mare and be with us for Sunday worship and one other day in the week. I know from your welcome of Paul Kingdom and Sharon that you will make her feel at home.
It might be easy (too easy) to think that she is here to do the ministry FOR us and that she will be an expert on drains, Faculties and the hundred and one other things clergy are supposed to know. But read the Ordinal – the job description of a Deacon – and however hard you look you will not find the abbreviation PCC! In fact this is what you will find: Deacons are called to work with the Bishop and the priests with whom they serve as heralds of Christ’s kingdom. They are to proclaim the Gospel in word and deed, as agents of God’s purposes of love. They are to serve the community in which they are set, bringing to the Church the needs and hopes of all the people. They are to work with their fellow members in searching out the poor and weak, the sick and lonely and those who are oppressed and powerless, reaching into the forgotten corners of the world, that the love of God may be made visible. Deacons share in the pastoral ministry of the Church and in leading God’s people in worship. They preach the word and bring the needs of the world before the Church in intercession. They accompany those searching for faith and bring them to baptism. They assist in administering the sacraments; they distribute communion and minister to the sick and housebound.
Deacons are to seek nourishment from the Scriptures; they are to study them with God’s people, that the whole Church may be equipped to live out the Gospel in the world. They are to be faithful in prayer, expectant and watchful for the signs of God’s presence, as he reveals his kingdom among us. Margaret will after a year be ordained as a priest – but – and this is the crucial thing, she will never stop being a deacon just as Sharon or I never stop being a deacon.
So Margaret’s arrival as a Deacon does not let any of us off the ministerial hook. She has certain gifts – and you have others – and St Andrew’s Church needs them both.
So, do pray for Margaret in the time of her preparation and for this new reminder that we are all servants of one another in God’s kingdom.
Your friend and deacon, Graham