Parish Letter

The Parish of St Peter & St Mary New Fishbourne
and the Parish of St Mary the Virgin Apuldram

The Revd Canon Moira Wickens
Rector of Fishbourne and Priest in Charge of Apuldram
The Rectory, 31 Caspian Close, Fishbourne, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 8AY
Rectory Tel (01243) 530198 Church Office (01243) 784283 E-mail

November 2017

Seeing God in the ordinary
Since the middle of September some 21 adults and young people have been preparing for their Confirmation which will take place later this month. It is always a great privilege for me to be able to walk with others on this part of their journey in faith. And I have say, I learn as much from them as they hopefully do from me.

At one of the early sessions we were reflecting on the different ways we can know God, and how we can experience His presence with us each day. I shared with the youngsters how lots of people feel a real sense of awe and wonder when they look at nature, and how the created world reveals God’s beauty and majesty in so many ways. There is perhaps nothing more wonderful than watching the sun rise or set as it turns the sky into amazing colours.

Given that it was a lovely evening, I asked them to walk around the outside of the hall, and for each to bring me just one item that said something to them about God. Off they went with great enthusiasm. It was not long before they returned with a variety of objects. Amongst them was a blackberry-for God feeds us, a rose petal reminding us of God’s love, a brick which said something about God’s strength and how we are made strong with Him in our lives. But the object that really surprised me was presented by Katie Turner. With a grin on her face and with great aplomb, she plonked in front of me an ordinary plastic garden chair. A chair that I have to say had seen better days and was a bit dirty and weather beaten. Feeling rather bemused I asked her what the chair said to her about God, her answer blew my mind. In her own wonderful dramatic way, Katie replied, “well, when you feel tired or worn out, when life seems hard, you can simply rest in God”. And with that she slumped into the chair.

What an amazing way to look at an old chair, what depth of thinking and insight. Once again I was reminded we should never underestimate the young. Their spirituality is so pure and deep, their minds are uncomplicated and in so many ways their hearts are wide open.

So when you next sit in a garden chair, or in any chair for that matter, remember that you too can rest in God for He will hold you at all times, especially when you are tired or overburdened. Jesus said, ‘come to me, all you who are weary, and I will give you rest’. Through the eyes of Katie, this rest is to be found even in a battered old garden chair.

So thank you Katie, as I said to you at the time, you along with the others will do great things for God. May we all see God in the very ordinary things around us day by day.

Love and prayers, Moira