Just a thought....
The Government has taken its single biggest step on the roadmap out of the Covid-19 pandemic with further easing of restrictions in England. This is very hopeful because we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
The past year has been a time of great uncertainty and anxiety for all of us. Many people across the nation, and indeed the world, have lost their jobs as businesses ceased trading. Many have lost their lives and many families are grieving. It has not been an easy time for anyone, so just how do we emerge from lockdown, to recover and rebuild relationships, as well as our community and church life? Reflecting on this, I am reminded of a butterfly at various stages of emerging from its cocoon to freedom. For this to happen, the conditions must be right, and the butterfly needs enough space to spread its wings so that it does not damage itself and its chances of flying away to freedom.
Like the butterfly, we are at different stages of emerging from the restrictions. Some of us will be ready to go immediately into the brave new world of socialising indoors and outdoors in the numbers allowed. Others may be a bit more cautious and will take a little longer to feel confident to break free after being ‘cocooned’ for so long.
At St Michaels and All Angels, we recognise these important differences and will ensure that we remain united in our difference. For example, one thing that has changed as we start to emerge from the pandemic is that worship services can now be accessed virtually via Zoom as well as by attendance in the church building. This will continue for the foreseeable future to protect those who are not yet ready for in-person worship. Jesus has entrusted the church to us, and our task is to reach out and care for the local community with diligence and wisdom, and to seek to grow the church community. It is also fair to say that the church emerging from the pandemic may be different to that which entered it over a year ago. It is with this in mind that we take time to reflect on what has changed during lockdown, and how we might recover, reimagine, and rebuild the church in Pirbright, taking on board lessons learned from our collective experience of the Covid-19 pandemic.
We thank God for sustaining us whilst in lockdown and strengthening us for the journey ahead. As Julian of Norwich, Spiritual Writer, said in Revelations of Divine Love: Our Lord loves us intimately. ‘He is everything that is good, and he supports us. He clothes us in his love, envelops us and embraces us. He wraps us round in his tender love and he will never abandon us’. Yes, God loves and cares for us all and nothing can or will ever change that. Rev Bev Hunt