Skip to main content

February message from the Ministry Team

Dear Friends,

Have you noticed how the world is full of ‘them’?   It seems that everywhere you look ‘they’ are there, whether it’s on the TV or in the newspapers, at the clinic or in the hospital, at school or college, at work or in the club, you can’t get away from ‘them’.   Even in church, amongst the neighbours, at home sometimes, ‘they’ appear.

            (Now, before you read on, perhaps you might take a moment to be aware of yourself, to ask who has come to mind as ‘them’, who ‘they’ are, and what you are thinking and feeling.  What tone did you hear as you read that first paragraph?  Were we talking ethnicity, religion, sexuality, age……?

            I wonder what criteria of difference came to mind.   We all carry the potential for prejudice and discrimination within us.)

            The ‘them’ I have in mind, found in all those places above, are the people we see as responsible, often to blame, when things are not as we think they should be.  

            “They haven’t done it.”   “Is it any surprise when it’s left to them?”  “They’re only in it for what they can get out of it.”          

            Depending on the context ‘they’ can be national politicians, local government, managers, celebrities, receptionists, teachers, doctors, social services, ministers, church or circuit stewards, even sometimes family members.    And the way in which we use the words ‘they and ‘them’ is to apportion blame, to place responsibility, and, often, to avoid thinking about our own responsibilities and action (or inaction).


            I’m not sure that to use the word ‘they’ in this way is very Christian.    I know that, in every walk of life and profession, there will be some who do a worse job than others, who make wrong choices, whose decisions will have unhelpful or downright dangerous consequences for others, sometimes ourselves.  

            The use of ‘they’, however, does two things. Firstly, it ignores the complexities of so many situations, trying to simplify things down to it being ‘their’ fault. Often ‘they’ are balancing multiple demands with limited resources, and although the outcomes may not be what we want, they are trying their best.  Scapegoating ‘them’ masks underlying issues. Secondly, the use of ‘they’ can be a way of avoiding ‘our’ responsibilities.  If we’re waiting for ‘them’ to sort it out or change, then ‘we’ don’t need to do anything.

            If ‘they’ is not a Christian word, ‘we’ most definitely is.  “Love one another as I have loved you.”   “Love your neighbour as yourself.”   “I am the vine, you are the branches…”   Commandments and images which show us who we are and how we are to be – people called to live and love as scripture shows us, in community.  We are called to live generously, to work for justice, to welcome the stranger, to give our neighbours a glimpse of God’s goodness, to be thankful in all circumstances.

            The next time you’re tempted to blame ‘them’, take a moment.  Reflect on ‘their’ situation; maybe say a prayer for ‘them’.   And ask yourself how you can respond in such a way that God’s goodness, which will be present, can have its way.

Yours,
Rev Nick

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Soupermums! Wilsden Trinity Church

Do you have a young baby? Looking for something to do? If the answer is yes then Soupermums is for you. We're here from 11 until 1 every Monday, Mums (and dads) have a rest and the babies can play. Have a lovely sit down whilst you sip on a brew. Enjoy having someone else make lunch for you! Come along to Wilsden Church, meet the rest of the group. Lovely ladies cuddle the babies, whilst you eat your soup. Chat with the mums, new friends you will make. Swap tips and advice over a slice or two of cake. So what are you waiting for? come on along, For homemade treats, good company and if you're lucky a song. We're looking forward to meeting you, please come take a peek, 11-1 at Wilsden Trinity, we're here every week!


Celine V  (a Soupermum!)
Where can new mums go, to have lunch where it’s warm and safe and you get to eat fresh soup and homemade cakes, while someone holds your baby? Too big an ask? Not at Wilsden Trinity! Every Monday lunch time, young mums come together and turn the gi…

Pancakes and Poems at Thornton

Pancakes and Poems, what a great evening we had on 13th February (Shrove Tuesday), in aid of 2nd Mile Project.

People were invited to come along for tea/supper and enjoy a variety of pancakes both savoury and sweet.


The selection was most tempting with fillings such as chilli. chicken and avocado, mushroom or cheese and onion. The sweet fillings were too many to mention, but my favourite was fresh fruits with ice cream – yum, yum.

Throughout the evening, many people had brought poems to read to everyone. The genre of this was amazing with funny, romantic, knowledgeable and even a little bit naughty.

It was good to be together with laughter and smiles all round. A special thank you to everyone who came and all who helped.

Elaine B, Thornton

Church Building at Thackley!

How would a gingerbread church with icing doors and chocolate finger organ pipes appeal? Junior Church at Thackley had been busy building such an edifice for a couple of weeks, before the part-completed church was creatively used as the basis of an inspired service, put together by worship leader, Gill Dobson.

Using the Lectionary readings and carefully chosen hymns, poems and prayers, Gill gave us a timely reminder that our churches are the people, not the building, and that we are all part of God’s Church – all our churches belong to Him – not us!

We considered how the children were building their gingerbread church on the groundwork of the Junior Church leaders and how in a similar way we were building Thackley Church, in the sense that the church is who we are and what we do. We were asked to think how we might describe Thackley - a busy church? A traditional church? An ageing church? A lively church? A tired church? A caring church?