Vicar's letter

Clergy letter

Dear Friends,

As I write, I along with millions across this country and the world have just watched the Royal Wedding.  What a wonderful occasion, unlike any Royal wedding we have seen before; a blend of traditional and modern aspects and American and British influences – truly multi-cultural and so truly of our time.  How powerful it was to see Prince Harry reach this stage in his life.  Until his wedding, probably the most memorable image of Harry was as a 12 year child walking behind his mother’s coffin.  Now that image has been replaced by wedding photos of he and Meghan which convey their deep love for each other. 

Their wedding was then an extraordinary event that has got everyone talking.  The dress, the guests and most unexpected of all the sermon.  Who would have thought that the sermon would be a topic of conversation for so many people?  There is no doubt that the energetic and passionate delivery of the preacher, Bishop Michael Curry, woke people up.  There were some jaws dropping and raised eyebrows amongst members of the Royal Family as the Bishop became more and more animated.  But most importantly of all people were listening and from what has been said and written about the sermon subsequently it was not just his preaching style that captivated people but what he said, in essence that all love comes from God and so love has the power to transform and change the world.  It was then, in the end, a very simple Christian message that conveyed to the world the heart of the Christian faith. 

Maybe then the Church could learn a lesson from this.  So often people approach the Church with many misconceptions about what Christians believe and what the Church teaches.  People can often see a set of rules before they realise or hear the simple, pure, world-changing message of our faith: God is love.  We see that love in the Father.  We see that love in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  We see that love in the Holy Spirit given to us at Pentecost.  That love is world changing.  As Bishop Curry said:

When love is the way, poverty will become history. When love is the way, the earth will be a sanctuary.  When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields, down by the riverside, to study war no more… When love is the way, there's plenty good room - plenty good room - for all of God's children.

His words here moved people around the world to consider again the Christian message and so they should move all of us to remember that this message – simple, yet transformative - is the message that we are called to carry out into the world.  It really is as simple as that. 

With every blessing,

Sarah