St Georges Hyde

Vicars Letter for July.

Dear Friends,

I am not sure what to write as I come to the end of my time here in Hyde, 6 years have gone in a flash and so much has happened.

The most important thing to say is THANKYOU. Thank you for working with me, for encouraging me, for putting up with me, for challenging me, for laughing with me, for crying with me. I have learnt so much and it has been a huge privilege to be your vicar and to work in Chester Diocese.

I came to faith in Christ when I was an awkward 14 year old. Someone told me that I was loved, loved so much by God, a love that wasn’t dependent on how clever I was or pretty I was or accomplished I was, just loved for being me. 40 years later it is that love which sustains me and fills me. If I leave you nothing else then left me leave you with this. That love is for all of us, for our families, our friends, our community, our enemies. It is a love that forgives, restores, heals, motivates and changes both us, and the world we live in.

It is this love in us that welcomes people at the door, that invites people to join with us, that fills our worship, that informs our words, that pushes us to seek justice and peace, that encourages us to dance with our children, and slowly but surely brings God’s Kingdom here on earth.

Hold on to it, fight for it and live your life, life in all its fullness, overflowing with it. Because our world needs it as much now as it ever has. It has been a harrowing month of violence, death, fear and political implosion. We grieve deeply with those who have been killed or injured by bomb, knife, or fire. We grieve for those who loved them and whose lives will never be the same. We cannot begin to imagine their pain.

Just as Manchester responded with ‘Choose Love’ after the bombing, so we respond in love. As Christians we believe that ‘we love because God first loves us and sent his son to die for us’.(1 John 4). When we find it hard to love and to forgive we can draw on the limitless depths of Gods love for us and His gift of love to us, Jesus Christ.

 As I leave this place let me encourage you to hold on to this love, love one another, love our community and truly live the life that God has for each of you. He couldn’t love you anymore than he does right here and right now.

May God richly bless you today and in the days ahead.