Posted by John on Jun 28, 2014 in Ettington
, Stourdene News
An update from Nikki Moon – please continue to keep Nikki, Steve and their boys Sam and JJ in your prayers. Thank you!
As the end of the first year of ordination training comes into sight I have been reflecting on the journey so far. It began last September with a weekend at the beautiful Ripon college Cuddesdon, which immediately felt like home and has proved to be a place of retreat where friendships have been forged, love and support received as well as given and where an incredible amount of learning has taken place.
Alongside the learning, reading and more than 50,000 words of writing has been a journey of discovery which is termed ‘formation’. ‘Formation’ is not something that can be described as it affects each Ordinand differently. For myself it has been somewhat of a roller coaster ride taken in the dark. The lows have been as low as the highs were high, the twists and turns taking me to places I didn’t know existed and the loop turning everything I previously thought on its head.
This year has also led me to journey to Coventry where I have been welcomed by the congregation at St Mary Magdalen’s and also to a placement at Rainsbrook Secure Training Centre, in Rugby, a detention centre for 12-18 year olds on remand or sentenced through the justice system. The three months I spent with the chaplains at Rainsbrook were transformational. I witnessed God at work in the staff and young people on a daily basis and the scripture from Isaiah 61:1 “…to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.” took on a greater significance.
The next part of my journey is just up the road in Witnash where I am on placement at St Margaret’s Church. I already feel like part of the family thanks to the love and prayers of Ele Adams and others in the parish.
Of course the journey doesn’t end, with a summer school looming at the end of July and the final year to look forward too, I am certain of one thing. The roller-coaster ride will continue as will the increasing word count and more highs and lows that contribute to the formation that leads an Ordinand through ordination to the start of a curacy this time next year.
I would like to thank all who have supported me in so many ways and would ask that you keep my family and I in your prayers through the next stage of the journey.
With God’s love and Blessings
Nikki Moon x
Church News – June 2014
June promises to be an interesting month, not least because we have two united Benefice Services in the one month! Firstly we will come together for the Benefice Service a week early this month to celebrate Pentecost, or the birthday of the Church. This will be at Alderminster on Sunday 8th June.
Ascension Day comes forty days after the resurrection of Christ from the dead and then ten days later we celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit. Acts chapter 2 describes how the Holy Spirit came with the sound of a violent wind and like tongues of fire that rested on all the disciples who were gathered in Jerusalem. Jesus was no longer present as a living being with his followers here on earth and so God breathed his Holy Spirit into the church which is now his body, “the Body of Christ”, here on earth. Any church without the Spirit is dead, just as a human body without the breath of life is dead. It is the Spirit who empowers us for life and growth in the church today just as it did over two thousand years ago.
That is worth celebrating but so too is Ali’s ordination as a Priest which takes place at Coventry Cathedral at 5 pm on Saturday 28th; June – everybody who would like to attend that service is welcome to do so and it is likely we will be arranging a bus so we can travel up together for this special event.
In case you cannot make the ordination, or even if you can, we are having a special joint service for the entire Benefice which will take place at Butlers Marston Church at 10.30 am on Sunday 29th June. At this service Ali will celebrate her first Communion and a good, long-standing friend on hers, The Reverend Keith Mobberley, will be the preacher at that service. We are planning to have a bring-and-share lunch after the service with a glass of wine to help aid the celebrations – do please try and join Ali to mark this very special weekend for her.
On a practical note a loo will be provided at Butlers Marston Church that day which should make life easier for all of us!
June is a busy month for several parishes with a series of fund raising events taking place. Pillerton and Butlers Marston both have their fetes (7th and 14th respectively) whilst Ettington have an event called “Fashionably Late” on June 13th in the Community Centre with food and Halford have their Street Party on midsummer’s day. There are also three weddings in June – all at Butlers Marston.
We try to mention all of these events, and others, in the “Weekly Grapevine” newsletter that now goes out to over seventy homes in the Benefice by e-mail. If you do not yet receive this weekly e-mail please let us know and we would be only too pleased to add your name to the list of recipients so you can be kept informed of what is going on. If you do not have e-mail, please ask someone in your parish who does, and I am sure they will be willing to print a copy of the letter off for you.
Similarly if there are events in your parish that you would like to tell others about please let me know and they can be included in the “Weekly Grapevine”.
Finally, June is a very busy month for our schools with the end of the academic year fast approaching. It is a very important term for children who have exams to sit and who will be moving on to the next level of their education. Please pray for the children and their teachers at this busy and significant point in their school careers. Thank you.