St Peter & St Paul's Newsletter - June 2022

Letter from Revd Helen Burnett

This newsletter is being put together as the nation celebrates the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, I was in Glebe House our local nursing home as the first events unfolded and therefore doubly aware that this is certainly not holiday time for everyone. A stint at the foodbank quickly brings home that it is not easy to party when you are struggling to make ends meet…or feeling isolated and alone, and yet events like Jubilee give us an opportunity to connect outside of the ordinary everyday stuff and let go for a moment the difficulties that surround us.

So, although I’m not really the flag waving type I can fully understand those who embrace the opportunity to escape a little from the mundane. The effect of a 2 day bank holiday even though many still have to work so that others can rest is to stall the nation for a moment, to put other things on hold.

This 2022 Platinum Jubilee just so happens to coincide with the church calendar when we pause for 10 days as we mark events in 1st century Jerusalem that found the disciples waiting to see what would happen next, post Ascension. They waited together and we in church wait, pausing briefly before Pentecost.

Just as we as a nation have the opportunity to review the last 70 years so the disciples must have been reviewing and discussing the events of the whistlestop 3 years of Jesus ministry.

Then came the extraordinary day of Pentecost and the gift of the Spirit which sent them out on journeys they could never have imagined possible and into situations they could not have faced without their faith and without the power imbued in them by the Holy Spirit.

Seventy years ago, it appears that our Queen drew heavily on her faith in order to fulfil the role imposed upon her. You may or may not think that the monarchy is a good idea but to watch someone accept a duty and find strength in God is always fascinating and encouraging for those of us trying to live out our faith in our particular place and time.

The biblical account of Acts of the Apostles are with us in our daily services throughout this time, I am stunned by the first disciples response to the call of the spirit and their courage as ordinary folk just like you and me, to live differently in the face of persecution, imprisonment and challenge. Their counter cultural sharing of all that they possessed and their open invitation to all comers to join them continues to be a challenge to us all.

Imagine a world in which that was lived out fully, then perhaps, the Queen would have been able to share her burden and her wealth, and those working the bank holiday would be properly rewarded for their contribution to the common good.