Church Notices

A Little Prayer

Whilst scrolling through twitter following the C of E Synod debate came across this little prayer.

Teach me, my God and King, In all things Thee to see, And what I do in anything To do it as for Thee.
George Herbert Priest Poet 1633

A Prayer To Ponder

At this time of change in the Benefice and making ready a prayer to ponder from Thomas Merton.

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I am following Your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that I have the desire to please You does in fact please You. And I hope I have that desire in all I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that, if I do this, You will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust You always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for You are ever with me, and You will never leave me to face my perils alone. Amen 

Three Wishes

Three Wishes. Sunday 20th of July will be the last chance to write your three wishes on a postcard. Cards will be collected after the 8am at Buckler's Hard and 9.30am at Beaulieu Abbey.

Women Bishops

Dear Friends

I'm delighted to say that General Synod has voted to introduce women bishops.

Synod's decision has sent out a clear and joyful message. At last, gifted women leaders will be able to serve as bishops. I’m delighted, and I hope this decision will release energy, allow for reconciliation and enable all to flourish in the church’s life and mission.

For so long, including in our own Diocese of Winchester, the Church of England has benefited greatly from the outstanding ministry of both women and men working together. Now, we can look forward to working together in our mission as bishops as well.

This has been an emotional journey for many. That applies as much for those who have campaigned steadfastly for this day, as well as those whose traditional views have been challenged by the process. All should continue to have an honoured place both in our Diocese and across the Church. Importantly, this has been properly reflected in the legislation that Synod has passed.

Yours in Christ

+Tim

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Pastoral Letter From Bishop Tim

Dear Friends

I'm writing to keep you up to date with what's going on in the Diocese, and what's coming up. The garden at Wolvesey is abundant with the life and colour of summer, and it feels as if the Diocese is also abuzz with activity and ideas. I know that for some the pace of change is a challenge. As St Paul reminds us, if we can avoid growing weary, I am sure that we will reap an abundance at harvest time:

So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all, and especially for those of the family of faith. - Galatians 6:9-10

Our Mission Strategy

Our strategy for becoming a Mission-Shaped Diocese is coming together, and we've now been able to describe our Common Mission in a leaflet which we're distributing right across the Diocese. It illustrates the journey we're on, celebrating what we've already achieved and sketching out the road ahead. There's plenty of detail about the various strands of the strategy, including Mission Action Planning, the Rule of Life, the School of Mission and our World Mission Partnerships. Some of you may have already taken part in one of the 13 Deanery Consultations taking place across the Diocese, beginning to put together your Deanery's Mission Action Plan, or you may have heard about or been involved with another part of the strategy. The leaflet shows how these various strands come together as our common Mission Strategy and is worth reading carefully. If you haven't yet seen it, ask your local priest or minister for a copy of the Mission Strategy leaflet.

Funding our Common Mission – Parish Share

We're also producing a leaflet which sets out simply how parish share funds are used to support our Common Mission; it will be available shortly. I am delighted that your representatives on Diocesan Synod approved a completely new system for agreeing parish share contributions to our Common Mission when it met on 13 June. Guided by the principles discussed by the Synod Conference in 2013, it's a system which encourages radical generosity, taking account of the size of the worshipping community and its relative affluence to reach a suggested contribution to the mission of the whole Diocese. I am very grateful to the Parish Share Review group chaired by Alistair Baron for the very thorough and careful work they have done to get us to this point. Details of the new scheme and what parishes need to do next are already being sent to incumbents and PCCs.

Our Personal Giving

Now that our Mission Strategy and our new parish share system are taking shape, I'll be writing again in the next few weeks to ask you to reflect on your own giving. I'll be drawing attention to a basic element of our Christian discipleship: being generous, passionate disciples of Jesus in our time and place, living and speaking prophetically in his name. We look to give generously so we can do the things that God has called us to do.

"Let us work for the good of all"

Being a passionate disciple always involves having a noticeable, positive impact on our communities. St Paul, in his epistle to the Galatians, reminds us that the Gospel is not just good news for us as individuals, it is also good news for our communities and our world. He encourages us to "work for the good of all" – in other words, to contribute to the common good. What might this look like in your parish? Your village? Your town or city? Questions like these will be a focus at this month's General Synod in York, and as we begin to anticipate the General Election next year we may ask, "how can we make a contribution to the common good in our nation?" When the Church makes a real, noticeable impact, people see that what we offer is, indeed, good news – for them, and for us all. They begin to understand what it means that God is, in Christ, reconciling the world to himself.

"May the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you." (2 Thessalonians 3:16)

+Tim

The Right Reverend Tim Dakin

The Bishop of Winchester