This is a new blog for a new phase of life – after Priesting in a couple of weeks I’ll be able to do all the main functions of a Church of England Priest. I already do funerals, baptisms, and services without Eucharist (Holy Communion/Bread and Wine – depending on your church (non) allegiance), and in a fortnight I’ll be presiding at Eucharist (consecrating bread and wine for Communion) and conducting weddings too.
Today has been busy in the benefice – but it’s all been in the parish where I actually live, so at least I’ve been able to walk about (dodging the rain). It was our Fete – we have two churches in this parish, one is a modern design in the centre of the village, so we moved the chairs and held the fete in the church. Good job too – it poured!
For some, there may be shades of money changers in the Temple, but there is a long history of using churches to transact all sorts of business – especially in places where they were the largest undercover spaces. I wouldn’t like to return to the days of St Paul’s Cathedral conducting services while there is business, but for All Saints, it makes sense to use the building flexibly. The fete finished at 2pm – but 2.50 the church was entirely ready for Communion tomorrow, swept, chairs and altar put back to rights, and all as it should be. And we raised £800 for the parish – in an area where there isn’t a lot of money, and there weren’t a lot of customers.