Readers’ Licensing Service
Last Sunday I had the privilege of licensing five new Readers and welcoming eight Readers from other dioceses, to minister in this Diocese. I am thrilled that we are beginning to see a recovery of numbers coming forward for Reader ministry and I look forward to growing numbers being licensed in the years ahead.
Readers exercise a vital ministry as public lay Christians, who bring the experience of living faith in the day to day world into focus. At a recent Reader training day, I heard the immense excitement and energy from Readers in our Diocese who are animated by the dynamic role of Readers in mission. They have a vantage point to see opportunities for mission in our communities – and to do something about it. They are grit-in-the-oyster, catalysts, pioneers, agents of God’s transforming love in our villages and towns. Yes, this is expressed in their role in worship and for some in pastoral care, but the real difference they are making, and want to make, is as community missionaries. I thank God for them, for their energy and enthusiasm, and for all they are and do. Pray for them, and for more!
Finsbury Park Mosque Attack
I visited the Bond Street Mosque with the Canon Charles Jenkins on Monday morning to express my sympathy and show solidarity in the face of the appalling attack on worshippers leaving the Finsbury Park Mosque on Sunday night. “Why are we fighting? We are family?” one of the leaders of the Mosque asked me. We share a common heritage with the Jewish faith, and I pray we can grow in that understanding as well as in expressing our shared humanity. The mosques of Suffolk have with generosity and compassion contributed volunteers and donations to the victims of Glenfell Tower fire, as well as the victims of the terror attacks in London and Manchester. Our Muslim brothers and sisters are appalled and horrified by the actions of the ISIS-motivated terrorists, and have publicly expressed their dismay and shock. They are victims of these terrorists too, as well as of the attack at Finsbury Park. We pray we can celebrate what we share and give no ground to those who foster hatred and pit one group against another.
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