Trendlewood Annual Meeting 2018

Vicar’s Reflections

Where Are We Now?

Last year was a year of consolidation. The reality of independence caused a lot of detailed and forensic work on things such as finances, safeguarding, insurance and risk-assessment. All seemingly a little dull but all crucial. My thanks to those who have seen these things through.

It was a year in which those we call our full members rose from 57-61 but our regular Sunday attendance fell from 58-53 (it has fallen by ten in the last two years).

There are some obvious explanations. We lost a dear member and friend in Roger. Paul and Mary felt called to give their time and energy to All Saints. And it looks as though many of our Andy’s members are choosing not to come up to Trendlewood so often.

But it was a year in which we helped put on the biggest and most successful Community Festival so far.

Thanks

My thanks, as ever, to Duty Wardens, musicians, children’s leaders, intercessors, prayer ministers, pastoral team, readers (capital and lower case R), projectionists, preachers, worship leaders, home group leaders, chair movers, welcomers, coffee handlers, PA team and techies. This is a demanding place. You can’t hide.

But I single out for a gift from us this year four people who have worked tirelessly – our wardens, treasurer and secretary.

There are others I could thank by name and you know who they are. But this is a church body of many parts and the list would be very long.

Thank you to you all.

And my thanks that, after eleven years here, you were willing to grant me a sabbatical last autumn. The unexpected thrust from Assistant Rural Dean to acting Rural Dean in January was something I couldn’t have coped with if I hadn’t had that break. I am grateful.

Thanks too, to our partners in mission around the world who share this ministry with us and us with them. good to welcome Ed and Ruth back forom their time with Mercy Ships. More from them in a Sunday service soon.

Exciting news – Diocesan Synod will be asked to approve in July that Rural becomes Area and Lay Chair becomes Lay Dean. OK not that exciting.

Where Are We Going?

Last year we said:

‘We are going to continue to make welcome, hospitality and a willingness to export our best people our core values and our best evangelistic tool.’ I think we did that.

‘We are going to work out how to set Andy’s free to be weekly and independent as Holy Trinity did for us.’ We are still working on that.

‘We are going to sit light to the idea of having our own building but listen for the Lord’s prompt should he place such a thing before us clearly.’ We did that. Still do.

‘We are going to invest a lot of our people time in the Community Festival, creating community where there is little, and in praying for the chair of Festival 2019 to be found.’ We did that but still need a new chair.

Last year we said as a motto we wanted to rise to the heights. This year we are serving the extraordinary God.

In the next few weeks we will crank up our prayer life by having a greater involvement in Thy Kingdom Come – the Archbishop’s Prayer initiative leading up to Pentecost. Liz will head this up and will be saying something about it weekly.

In the summer we will welcome a second minister, a curate, to serve here. Michelle will bring a wealth of experience in ministry and I am looking forward to having a direct colleague.

In the autumn we are going to go down the vision-seeking road again. We must again place our ministry and our future before God and seek guidance.