Two themes spring to mind as I pen this month’s letter; holidays and the sea.
There have been many people in our congregations who have been taking holiday in recent weeks or are currently away (some for ages and ages!) Of course, they are taking quieter time away ahead of the school holiday period, which starts in the middle of July.
I will be taking holiday with my family during August and we have already begun our tradition of making a ‘wish list’ of what we plan to do and where we plan to visit together. Being new to this area we have decided to have a holiday at home (the answerphone and out of office email response will be employed!) and discover Furness. So far on the list we have; visit Broughton in Furness to see the medieval market place (my idea) walk up to the Ulverston Lighthouse (Ramsay’s), Go Ape (Definitely not my idea...I’ve no head for heights) and a cinema trip. The latter is something we can all agree on, we enjoy going to the cinema from time to time. What we choose to see is more difficult…
I anticipate we may compromise on The Incredibles 2 (excellent reviews) but Star
Adrift tells the (dramatized but true) story of a couple who set out to sail from Tahiti to San Diego, never imagining that only 20days in to a 4000mile voyage they would find themselves caught in one of the most catastrophic hurricanes in recorded history. What starts out as a love story becomes a tale of survival against the odds. The trailer looks, frankly, terrifying and whilst my own experience of sea going adventure extends only to European coastal hopping, I know enough of the exhaustion and anxiety of being far from land in stormy seas to know I would not find watching Adrift remotely entertaining.
The story of Jesus calming the storm was one of the readings used in our cycle of Gospel readings recently. Preparing to preach on it was an opportunity to reflect for myself, and with others, that God’s presence is with us always and that we can turn to Christ for help in the storms of life metaphorically too.
It is a reading we will be returning to at St. Cuthbert’s, Aldingham on 8th July when we hold a Sea Sunday service there at 2.30pm. Sea Sunday is a special opportunity for us to remember and say prayers for the 1.5million men and women who work at sea to ensure we receive our essential items. As part of an island nation and on a coastal peninsula we are very close to the reality that many seafarers work in dangerous and lonely conditions. Please do consider coming to join us at Aldingham where we will be joined by many local seafaring groups and community representatives.
So, whether you are returning from holiday, or preparing to go; whether on dry land or sailing calm oceans, may you be blessed and know the protection and love of our Lord Jesus Christ.
With every blessing,
“He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them.
He remains faithful forever.”